Gotta see 'em all: Singapore Tourism Board is using Pokemon Go to get people to visit local hotspots

PHOTO: Singapore Tourism Board

With Covid-19 bringing overseas travel to a standstill, the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) is working to promote domestic tourism by encouraging Singaporeans to explore tourist destinations within our shores. 

Already, STB has been pushing locals to patronise local establishments and lifestyle offerings with attractive promotions on hotel stays, eateries, retail outlets and island tours. 

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Now, STB is literally gamifying the process. Once-popular mobile game Pokémon Go is being utilised to incentivise folks to explore more of the island, starting today (Nov 12). 

As part of STB's #SingapoRediscovers campaign to support local businesses, the board has teamed up with augmented reality technology company Niantic to add up to 300 new PokéStops and PokéGyms across various tourist hotspots. 

Gotta explore ‘em all! We’ve teamed up with Niantic to add up to 300 new PokéStops and PokéGyms in Singapore, located...

Posted by Singapore Tourism Board on Wednesday, November 11, 2020

This will take place across 10 precinct locations, comprising Changi/East Coast, Chinatown, Civic District, Joo Chiat/ Katong, Kampong Gelam, Little India, Mandai/ Kranji, Marina Bay, Orchard Road and Sentosa. STB also disclosed that there are plans to schedule special Raid Battles — where more players are needed to take on difficult boss Pokémon — in some areas.

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When players arrive at these PokéStops and Gyms on Pokémon Go, they will see an in-app banner promoting the #SingapoRediscovers campaign. Upon clicking the banner, it will lead the player to the campaign website

Although not as popular as it initially was in 2016 when first introduced in Singapore, the game is still widely credited for increasing footfall in businesses. The game's premise of requiring players to walk around to find and catch Pokémon has also encouraged physical activity and discovery of domestic sights.

"As they pursue their favourite Pokémon across Singapore, we hope players will explore our precincts, discover hidden gems, and support local business — while staying safe and observing the necessary precautions," said STB's Brand Director Lim Shoo Ling.

annatan@asiaone.com