New Zealand’s tourism industry will benefit from Telecom’s decision to rapidly expand and commercialise its national WiFi network, the nation’s Tourism Industry Association (TIA) says.
More WiFi hotspots will translate into happier visitors and enhance New Zealand’s international image as a ‘connected’ nation, explains TIA Chief Executive Martin Snedden.
“We know that free WiFi is very popular with travellers and improves their overall visitor experience. It enables them to check their itineraries, research attractions, look up local events and load maps,” he says.
“WiFi also helps visitors stay connected to friends and work colleagues while they travel around the country.
“They can immediately blog and brag about their holiday adventures, uploading videos and photos to social media sites such as Facebook and Instagram, which in turn helps promote New Zealand.”
Extending the WiFi network to 2000 hotspots by mid-2014 will enable visitors to access it quickly and easily whenever they want to.
Snedden says improving the overall visitor experience is one of the key themes in Tourism 2025, a framework to grow the value of the $23 billion New Zealand tourism industry. Tourism 2025 will be launched at the 2013 TIA Summit in Wellington on 1 October.
“We know that travellers value access to WiFi so today’s announcement from Telecom is a timely enhancement to our visitors’ experience ahead of the 2013-14 peak season,” Snedden says.