Indonesia will launch a new digital platform this year to boost its tourism industry, it announced this week.

“I will prove that the use of digital technology is going to take Indonesian tourism to a new level,” said Tourism Minister Arief Yahya.

The website called Travel X-Change Indonesia will bring together tourist offerings from across the country, allowing visitors to browse and book travel packages through a single portal. It will be launched on Indonesia’s national day this year, 17 August.

10 million foreign tourists visited Indonesia last year. The Ministry of Tourism plans to double this by 2019.

Minister Yahya has launched a “Go Digital” campaign, encouraging travel businesses to go online. “Traditional travel agents will be left behind if they do not take this opportunity,” he said. The Ministry of Tourism will train travel agents to design better websites to market their products, he added.

Indonesia is looking to Australia for lessons in using digital in tourism. Minister Yahya was in Sydney this week to learn from Australia’s digital platform, Tourism Exchange Australia (TXA).

The tool built by the Australian Government helps tourism businesses promotel their products on travel websites. Traditionally, businesses would have to register and allocate inventory with each website. TXA simplifies this by automatically delivering their rates and availability across multiple websites.

Meanwhile, Singapore recently announced that will use data analytics to gain insights on tourists’ behaviour. It is also building a digital repository for businesses to share their products with travel agencies.

Image by alex hanoko, licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0