Helsinki partners with Tencent to woo Chinese visitors

Helsinki partners with Tencent to woo Chinese visitors

Finnish capital Helsinki has launched a new partnership with Chinese technology giant Tencent to create a ground-breaking channel straight into the mobile devices of WeChat users.

Helsinki has set itself the goal of being the most digitalised city in the world, and the cooperation with Tencent ensures that the city is already now a globally remarkable innovator in digital tourism services.

In September 2017 Helsinki and Tencent signed a cooperation agreement, according to which Helsinki will serve as an intelligent tourism model for Chinese outbound tourism.

The two cooperation partners have since co-developed a destination mini program that offers Helsinki travel information to almost one billion WeChat users.

The mayor of Helsinki, Jan Vapaavuori, and general manager Zhan Shu from the Tencent governmental affairs and tourism centre, earlier launched the new WeChat Helsinki mini program as part of the Chinese New Year celebrations in Helsinki.

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The initial version of the WeChat Helsinki mini program allows users to access content about Helsinki’s sights, services, events and transportation.

Panoramic Helsinki 360-photos, a translation service and emergency help are also included.

As a pioneer in utilising open data, Helsinki will continue to work closely with Tencent to further develop the application.

Helsinki’s open data resources include databases for places, events and services.

The aim is to build an application that provides users with comprehensive, professional and real-time information and services.

“Helsinki’s strategic aim is to be the forerunner city of digitalisation in the near future.

“For travellers we want to be the safest, most functional and happiest place to visit.

“The Helsinki mini program makes it possible to share what’s best about Helsinki with millions of Chinese people in a way that creates a sharable, local experience,” said Vapaavuori.

In the near future the WeChat Helsinki mini program will also include an interactive map and a public transportation journey planner.

The aim is also to include the possibility to buy mobile tickets for public transport and test the WeChat Pay integration for some of the services.