Ruapehu i-Site leads way in vis­i­tor net­work­ing co-op­er­a­tive

Wanganui Chronicle - - News - By Staff Re­porter

Ruapehu i-Site man­ager Kim Treen has at­tended a hui be­tween the i-Site Vis­i­tor In­for­ma­tion Net­work and the De­part­ment of Con­ser­va­tion (DoC) to dis­cuss how the vis­i­tor ex­pe­ri­ence can be im­proved through a more co­he­sive ser­vice.

The Ruapehu i-Site net­work was the first in New Zealand to trial putting an of­fi­cial i-Site into a DoC Visi t or Cen­tre in Whaka­papa Vil­lage at Mt Ruapehu.

The suc­cess of that trial has now s een f our of t hese ar­range­ments es­tab­lished, with Auck­land, Christchurch and Dunedin join­ing Ruapehu in of­fer­ing vis­i­tors ex­pert lo­cal ad­vice as well book­ing travel, ac­com­mo­da­tion and ex­pe­ri­ences for their i-Site area and any­where else around New Zealand.

Treen said the fo­cus of the hui was on en­abling the colo­cated i-Site and DoC vis­i­tor cen­tres to work to­gether bet­ter, hi ghli ghti ng op­por­tu­ni­ties through sales, train­ing and tech­nol­ogy.

“Hav­ing the trained i-Site staff and sys­tems op­er­at­ing along­side DoC Vis­i­tor Cen­tre staff sig­nif­i­cantly en­hances the vis­i­tor ex­pe­ri­ence for ev­ery­one’s ben­e­fit.”

Feed­back from Ruapehu tourism op­er­a­tors has been over­whelm­ingly pos­i­tive re­gard­ing the i-SITEs and DoC work­ing more closely to­gether, which they see as im­prov­ing the con­nec­tions be­tween tourism op­er­a­tors and vis­i­tors, she said.

i-Site ex­ec­u­tive man­ager Paul Yeo said the more ser­vices can be in­te­grated into one du­al­branded lo­ca­tion with staff trained to han­dle any type of ques­tion, the bet­ter the ex­pe­ri­ence for vis­i­tors and they may be en­cour­aged to stay longer while in New Zealand.

Yeo said he’d like to see even more i-Site and DoC vis­i­tor cen­tres co-lo­cat­ing in the fu­ture.

DoC cus­tomer and brand man­ager Sarah Wood added that the DoC/i-Site hui was hugely ben­e­fi­cial.

Ruapehu was the first i-Site net­work in the coun­try to trial putting an i-Site op­er­a­tion into a De­part­ment of Con­ser­va­tion vis­i­tor cen­tre in Whaka­papa Vil­lage.

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