Tech in tourism: say hello before you get there

Goonhilly Visitors Centre, actually a satellite dish facility in Cornwall, UK (courtesy madnzany on Flickr CC)It used to be that when you visited a destination, you picked up a couple of brochures at the airport or the train station or the bus station, to go along with your guidebook.

Sometimes, there was even an opportunity to wander into a physical Visitor’s Center and talk to a knowledgeable human from the tourist bureau.

Today, with travelers Googling for information, asking questions on Facebook and tossing out queries on Twitter, many of the places that you’re going to visit are learning to reach out and say hello before you even get there.

Some are using a Twitter hashtag to keep track of your questions:

Some are using blogs to give you the inside scoop:

Some are using YouTube video to show their destinations:

They’re on Facebook (Discover South Carolina,) on MySpace (Nashville’s Visit Music City) and sharing photos on Flickr (Visit Idaho.)

Here’s the good news: a CVB or tourism organization is non-commercial. They exist to “sell” you on the merits of their destination and convince you to visit. Nothing else.

Someone whose whole job is simply to make sure you have a nice visit?

That’s worth a follow….

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