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This study was qualitative-action research, which focused on developing interactive communication tools based upon modern technologies; such as, smartphone and augmented reality (AR) technology for developing an interesting tourism map in order to provide destination information to Thai and foreign tourists who were interested in visiting Chiang Rai and the nearby areas. This was conducted to enhance tourists’ travel experiences.
The researcher used a combination of qualitative research and action research in gathering information from stakeholders; such as, tourism policymakers, professionals, representatives of tourism associations and related businesses, as well as, academics and tourists in the local areas. The information was utilized in designing an interactive communication tool to enhance the tourists’ experience in order to promote the tourism industry in Chiang Rai.
Four prototypes of the communication tools were developed and were classified in to four frameworks, which were; A Chiang Rai tourist destination map in general; A Chiang Rai map focused on each tourist attraction; A One-day travel map (based on a concept of the slow life journey) and postcards to promote Chiang Rai tourism. The result of tools testing was considered as satisfactory by tourism policymakers, professionals, representatives of tourism associations, related businesses, as well as, tourists in the local areas and these tools should be further developed to use in promoting tourism in Chiang Rai and other provinces in Thailand.
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