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Tour From Home to fight Coronavirus

Updated: Sep 2

Project Title: ท่องเที่ยวจำลอง: Tour From Home 2020

Condition: Ongoing

Date: 04/2020







/ Challenged by the recent COVID-19 problems in Thailand, the project "Thai Citizens Against Crisis: Citizen Resilience Project" funded by the Thai Health Promotion Foundation, supporting sub-projects named “TourFromHome2020”.


TourFromHome2020 is one of 57 projects selected from a total of 565 proposals. All of the projects have been proposed to help support various victims of the COVID-19 situation. One of the groups heavily suffered is the tour guide group. Why?






/ Thailand has some of the highest numbers of tourists in the Asia region with over 30 million visitors in recent years. However, the 2020 pandemic has reduced the tourist rate by more than 90%, which resulted in more than 30,000 guides unemployed nationwide and increasing. Ultimately leads to a huge suffer in the economy.






The countries lockdown has led people in many different fields of career to lose their jobs or must stay at home and work from there, changing the course of their life for the time being. Many struggling to get through the pandemic finding a way to compensate for their past income. As a result, tourist guides in Thailand are to take a “leave without pay” because of the major hit in the market.




(Thai guide facebook page expressed their thoughts on the situation)



Moreover, the guides could not get any major jobs because of a law restriction that forbids any tourist guide to work without a touring company as a middle man. Along with this, guarantees 3-6 months without work, therefore, begging the government to issue urgent remedies. /






/ Therefore, to approach this challenge with the new normal of well-being, our team which consists of architectural designers and creative strategists who are an expert at computer-aided design and 3D data application, came up with an idea to incorporate a “Virtual Tour” media with available data of 3D photo-realistic models on tourism sites to a new WebAR platform as well as on the Facebook page as a solution to assist in reviving the industry during these difficult time.


Our goal is to let Thai guides that are familiar with these heritage landmarks around Thailand, which still retains it's historical and architectural value to come out, be able to share their knowledge, and perform their magic for people who are also stuck at home to experience.






With the objective set in mind, we reached out to many organizations involved Tourism Authority of Thailand, Department of Tourism, and Professional Tourist Guide Association of Thailand to account for the plans also inquire about the situation together with an open call for Thai guides.


Consequently, the team has demonstrated LIVE tour events with Thai guides who are open to collaborate with us. Our LIVE format has the host chatting with the guides on interesting facts and history about the landmarks while interacting with viewers at home by sharing their personal stories and narrative experiences.


The event will act as a stage which helps expose and enabled individual guide to continue to exercise their knowledge during the pandemic as well as allowing them to express each of their styles and characteristics, to attracts visitors leading to potential jobs all while working from home.




( Wat Phra Si Sanphet with guide Podit Kanateerakul )


( Wat Benchamabophit with guide Chulapassorn Panomvan Na Ayudhya )


Furthermore, the LIVE tour videos were arranged and broadcast on Facebook. Currently, there are 7 episodes in total which consist of various tourism landmarks including Wat Phra Si Sanphet in Ayutthaya, Wat Benchamabophit in Bangkok as well as an outbound tour of San Sebastian Basilica of Philippines all available for playback on TourFromHome page.


The broadcast activity permits guides profile to be displayed to the public and accessible for donations from viewers at home who are willing to support the guide. /



Wat Phra Si Sanphet, Ayutthaya, Thailand



Wat Benchamabophit, Bangkok, Thailand



San Sebastian Basilica exterior, Manila, Philippines



San Sebastian Basilica interior, Manila, Philippines




The virtual reality tour was conducted successfully by the talented associate of Thai guides and the magnificent 3D photogrammetry data, which were sponsored from international sources including teams from Cyark, Sketchfab, and Nova Research.


There are many advantages when comparing virtual reality tour to the real ones. By utilizing the benefits of the 3D model, users could experience a new glance on these landmarks from whole new perspectives with ease; birds-eye view to inspect the architectural plan seamlessly and also be able to visit many prohibited spots on physical places where tourists wouldn't be allowed to go to due to privacy and fragility reasons.


The 3D tourism landmarks can be explored on our website www.tourfromhome.org All of the non-commercial materials are available for self-service LIVE as well as for education purposes.


We hope that the project will be good learning tools for students of all sorts of interest to enjoy together with a mission to help grow Thai citizen appreciation towards Thai tourism for many years to come. /



( Wat Phra Si Sanphet early site visit )


Tour From Home project was promoted on several news report. Special Thanks to


Daily News



Thai PBS



Nation TV




All of the LIVE tour episodes are available on our Facebook page


Wat Phra Si Sanphet Part 1: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=933123653804380

Wat Phra Si Sanphet Part 2: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=2317274345242800

Wat Phra Si Sanphet Part 3: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=598925364076216


Wat Benchamabophit Part 1: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=570099047214361

Wat Benchamabophit Part 2: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=868845606972156


San Sebastian Basilica Part 1: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=325037218514098

San Sebastian Basilica Part 2: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=287982008958797




Credits:

In collaboration with Abbok Design




Abbok design studio is an architecture company based in Bangkok. They are an expert in interior design that brings technology applications into reality in the form of VR & AR. They believe in providing better solutions through tech and creativity to reach the best possible service needs. Check out their delicate work at https://www.abbok.net




The project was also published on:


Thai PBS:

https://program.thaipbs.or.th/WanmaiThaiPBS/episodes/70195

Nation TV:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_rB6q7960kY

Techsauce:

https://techsauce.co/pr-news/simulation-travel

Naewna:

https://www.naewna.com/local/502339





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