Chinese travelling to Helsinki will now be able to use WeChat mobile service to review local recommendations about the best restaurants, shopping, events and sights in and around the capital of Finland. They can also plan their commute from their hotel to the attraction of their choice, and pay for transportation, purchase travel tickets – all within one mobile service.
“By collaborating with Tencent and the world’s leading MaaS provider Whim, we have been able to develop an innovative user-based service where visitors can gain easy access to the best locally recommended experiences our city has to offer,” the statement cited Tia Hallanoro, director of brand communications and digital development at Helsinki Marketing.
Hallanoro maintains that the number of Chinese visitors travelling overseas is growing rapidly and travel patterns are in real transition. “With Helsinki miniprogram, a comprehensive and reliable one-stop service, Tencent wants to serve them as well as possible,” Zhan Shu, general Manager of the Tencent Governmental affairs and tourism center said. The app, which works like a personal guide, is a mini programs app available on WeChat.
“From the perspective of independent travellers, simply travelling in an unfamiliar city is always one of the key factors that can hamper enjoying the full experience. When all available modes of transport and the most reliable service providers can be reviewed and paid for in your native language using a single app, there is no more need for separate tickets, apps and payment methods,” Kaj Pyyhtiä, co-founder and chief strategic partnerships officer at MaaS Global said.
Tencent announced its new venture into the travel sector in May 2019. China’s outbound tourism is estimated to grow to 400 million overseas trips by Chinese residents. Of more than a billion internet users in China, 97.5 per cent use mobile device for browsing, and 35 per cent of the 26.5 hours a week spent online are spent on WeChat. Last year, WeChat mini programs represented 20-30 per cent of the total traffic.
*This article and image was originally published by the much-respected entrepreneur.com