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Airbnb Experiences & The Singapore Tourism Board Launch Partnership To Support International Tourism Recovery

Airbnb Experiences and STB will jointly drive quality travel experiences in Singapore, as well as encourage Singapore tourism industry players to digitalise and pivot towards innovative hybrid business models

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels

The partnership enables Airbnb Experiences and STB to continue offering quality tourism experiences to global audiences in the new international tourism climate. A new Singapore Virtual Trips destination page will be featured on the Airbnb platform to showcase a collection of iconic Singapore Online Experiences to audiences around the world.

Airbnb Experiences and the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) today signed a two-year Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to co-promote and grow a range of unique, authentic Airbnb Experiences hosted by passionate locals on the Airbnb Experiences platform.

This agreement comprises three strategic pillars: 1) Development of Singapore Experiences in the new tourism landscape; 2) Co-marketing of destination Singapore to stay top-of-mind amongst global audiences; and 3) Facilitating data and knowledge exchange to enable effective recovery.

1. Development of Singapore Experiences in the new tourism landscape

Virtual tourism experiences have rapidly surfaced as one of the key digital commodities for the global travel and hospitality industry as the COVID-19 pandemic impacts businesses and livelihoods. Through the MOU, Airbnb Experiences and STB will join hands to showcase the range of unique and authentic Singapore Online Experiences on the Airbnb platform, through a variety of creative channels to stay top-of-mind to travellers worldwide.

To kick off this partnership, the two organisations have developed and launched Singapore Virtual Trips, a collection of Online Experiences hosted by iconic Singapore tourism industry partners and featured on a dedicated landing page on the Airbnb platform. This first-of-kind destination page will also provide compelling Singapore destination content, offering international travellers an opportunity to explore the country virtually during this challenging period.

Singapore Virtual Trips features a wide array of unique Online Experiences, including  a sustainability-themed tour at Gardens by the Bay’s Cloud Foresta virtual visit to Peranakan home museum ‘The Intan’ with owner Alvin Yapp, an interactive bingo tour of the one-north tech precinct by Monster Day Tours, and a behind-the-scenes peek into the rich history of the Old Kallang Airport with Jerome Lim, founder of heritage website The Long and Winding Road. More tourism industry partners are expected to join this initiative following this first wave of Online Experiences.

This partnership will encourage Singapore tourism businesses to take their products online and pivot towards innovative hybrid business models, as the industry reimagines the future of tourism. Said Mr. Chad Davis, Deputy Director of the Cloud Forest, Gardens by the Bay, who hosts the ‘A Mountain Under Glass – Cloud Forest’ Online Experience: “This is an exciting new way for Gardens by the Bay to continue to delight people, enabling us to  connect with friends and fans around the world. I look forward to sharing my passion for our Cloud Forest and helping virtual visitors rediscover the region’s most extraordinary cooled conservatory through this unique virtual format.”  

Beyond Online Experiences, both parties will also collaborate in the future to onboard unique and authentic in-person Airbnb Experiences across various categories, including dining, nature, wellness, and the arts. Aimed at the long-term development of the Singapore Experiences sector, both parties will work with local tourism industry partners to continuously offer differentiated and fresh experiences to travellers. The partnership will thus help local entrepreneurs leverage the economic benefits of experience-driven travel, by providing them with opportunities to share their passions and interests and connecting them with travellers who are interested in Singapore.

2. Co-marketing of destination Singapore to stay top-of-mind amongst global audiences

Given ongoing international travel restrictions, the partnership aims to capture audience interest for Singapore to remain top-of-mind as a destination amongst consumers worldwide, leveraging both Airbnb Experiences and STB’s strong brand images and global reach.

Under the partnership, both parties will jointly produce a lineup of co-branded content featuring destination Singapore and Airbnb Experiences, to be served across their respective platforms and channels. STB and Airbnb Experiences also plan to make such content available to travel industry partners via STB’s Tourism Information and Services Hub (TIH). These efforts are especially critical in driving effective recovery as international travel restrictions ease.

In addition, both parties will work towards extending destination information, tools, and benefits to Airbnb Experiences guests  – such as exclusive offers unlocked through sign-ups for the VisitSingapore app.

3. Facilitating data and knowledge exchange to enable effective recovery

Airbnb Experiences and STB will mutually share insights and best practices to grow experience offerings in Singapore and aid in strategic tourism development and recovery. To kick start this, Airbnb Experiences has invited STB to access their City Portal, a first-of-its-kind data-sharing platform built exclusively for governments and tourism organizations to equip them with travel insights and other relevant resources. Data and knowledge exchange will help both partie onboard more targeted Singapore Experiences, refining tourism products and services in this new environment through a deeper understanding of the evolving traveller profile.

“Healthy travel is travel that keeps the economics local and is authentic to the culture of the destination. In the context of seeking to support such healthy travel, we are excited to be partnering with the Singapore Tourism Board to promote experiential travel in one of the world’s most vibrant and dynamic communities. I have personally enjoyed Airbnb’s Singaporean cooking Experiences and know that such Experiences unlock new ways to discover Singapore through its greatest natural resource – its people. And it is through using the Airbnb platform to showcase the incredible people of Singapore to the world that, working in partnership with the Singapore Tourism Board, we can help support the recovery of international tourism,” said Chris Lehane, Senior Vice President, Policy and Communications, Airbnb.

Mr Keith Tan, Chief Executive, STB, said: “STB’s partnership with Airbnb Experiences is a timely one. As travel gradually resumes, we want to focus on strengthening Singapore’s brand image in the minds of audiences around the world, and ensure that our destination remains top-of-mind. This partnership will also give passionate Singapore hosts a world-leading platform to reach out to quality travellers globally, while helping them innovate and explore new business models. We are excited about working with Airbnb, and look forward to breaking new ground together.”

For more details on this new collection of Singapore Online Experiences powered by Airbnb Experiences and STB, check out this Virtual Trips destination page.

Annex: Singapore Online Experiences

New Airbnb Online Experiences featured on Virtual Trips, in partnership with the Singapore tourism industry 

  • Secrets of Singapore’s Smallest Museum – Join Alvin Yapp, founder of award-winning Peranakan home museum The Intan, to experience one of the world’s largest collections of Peranakan culture. Listen to intimate stories about the opulent lifestyles of the Peranakans and step into their fantasy world of the Peranakan home – where East meets West. 
  • Mountain Under Glass– Meet Chad Davis, insider extraordinaire at the Cloud Forest conservatory of Singapore’s iconic Gardens by the Bay, as he provides an exclusive behind-the-scenes view of the cloud forest, uncovers fascinating stories about working at one of Singapore’s most recognizable landmarks, and shares the importance of sustainability in our changing world.
  • Virtual Bingo Tour – Rediscover Singapore’s one-north– Byron, founder of popular Singapore tour provider Monster Day Tours, leads an interactive tour of the one-north precinct, Singapore’s very own Silicon Valley. Explore the home of some of the country’s most exciting startups and discover the latest innovations in Singapore, where ideas transform into cutting-edge possibilities.
  • Hidden in Plain Sight– Join Jerome Lim, founder of award-winning heritage site The Long and Winding Road and one of Singapore’s foremost heritage experts, in exploring the city’s architectural treasures through the decades. Beyond the glass and steel facades of Singapore’s modern skyscrapers, he unveils a colourful, surprising side to Singapore and its hidden glories, including such iconic landmarks as the Old Kallang Airport

The Virtual Trips page also features other Airbnb Online Experiences showcasing the people, places and culture of Singapore:

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BRANDTHINK PR are a marketing communications company that solves business problems by telling great stories that shape conversations, change perceptions and influence actions.

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