An interactive visitor guide that allows users to navigate their way around Cardiff, using GPS and Google maps, locating everything from the city’s hotels, attractions, restaurants and cafes has been launched today.
Cardiff now joins just a handful of cities in the UK using the latest mobile application (app) technology to promote the city to a global audience, in a move to attract additional visitors and investment and improve the visitor experience for those arriving in the capital.
The ‘app’ for iPhone which was developed as a result of a partnership between Cardiff & Co, the organisation charged with promoting the city and New Mind, has already received a big thumbs up from visitors to Cardiff. The ‘App will feature products from across the Cardiff Tourism Network membership from Margam Park in the west to Brecon in the north and Magor in the east.
Anamaria Jularic and Snjezana Klobucar from Croatia agreed to put the new ‘Cardiff app’ to the test during their stay at the city’s River House Backpackers which overlooks the Millennium Stadium. Both set off for the city centre, Snjezana armed with the slim-line iPhone and Anna Maria with a traditional map of Cardiff. Both were able to find their way around Cardiff’s compact city-centre with relative ease.
But the whole iPhone experience which offers event listings, opening times, admission prices and images for venues and restaurants, including direct links to their websites and a plethora of useful information proved to be the runaway winner as Snjezana explains:
“We arrived in Cardiff from Paris and when we were asked if we would like the use of the iPhone ‘app’ for the day, we thought why not, it could be fun and would help us find our way around on our first visit to the city. I felt almost guilty seeing Anamaria struggling with her map, when I had this pocket sized phone where all the information I wanted was available, simply by touching the screen. This included a map which pinpointed exactly where I was as I was walking and highlighted exactly where I wanted to go - Cardiff Castle. It was so easy and quite exciting to use. I could even browse through the different restaurants and cafés in Cardiff, which made choosing a place to eat so much easier. I could look at the web site of a particular restaurant and then decide if I liked the look of it and the food on offer. We had a great few days in Cardiff.”
Richard Thomas, Managing Director of Cardiff & Co said, “People visiting Cardiff for the first time, almost always, have a positive experience of the city and this is obviously reflected in the continued growth in visitor numbers – now standing at some 14 million annual visitors. But we don’t want to sit back and wait for people to chance upon our city, or to be simply an add-on from London. We want Cardiff to be people’s destination of choice wherever they are, be that in the UK, Europe or anywhere in the world for that matter. We have to be far more ‘savvy’ in promoting the city, especially when the technology is out there already to make that job a lot easier for us. There are, I understand, 90 million iPhone/iPad users across the globe – a sizeable audience to promote all that Cardiff has to offer”.
He added, “We knew that this would be an excellent vehicle for marketing the city and one which would make the visitors’ experience an easier and more enjoyable one. But the best people to ask about the value and effectiveness of this product are the visitors themselves which is why we asked Anamaria and Snjezana to try it out for the day and I think, from their comments, the Cardiff App certainly gets the thumbs up.”
Welcoming the launch of the ‘App’, Mark Taylor, Chief Executive of the Wales Millennium Centre said, “It’s great that Cardiff & Co has taken the initiative with this fantastic resource for visitors and those considering visiting the city. This is not only a great way of raising Cardiff’s profile but also a great way of improving visitors’ experience of the city when they arrive.”
Those wanting to be amongst the first to try out this exciting new app are welcome to go along to ATcomputers in the Morgan Arcade, The Hayes, Cardiff from Wednesday 2 March where staff will be happy to help.
To view or purchase (£1.19) the new Cardiff iPhone app, go to: