By Gayane Melikyan
Yerevan Card Program launched
Today marked the presentation devoted to the official launch of the Yerevan Card Program at the National Gallery of Armenia.

Yerevan Card provides tourists and fans of culture and history with the exclusive opportunity to discover Yerevan, one of the world’s oldest cities, in a more accessible way. The Program conveys a new message in the tourism sector through the application of information technologies and serves as the innovative approach to the development of municipal and cultural tourism.

The creators of the program are collaborating with Yerevan Municipality, the RA Ministry of Culture, the State Tourism Committee of the RA Ministry of Economic Development and Investments and ICOM National Committee of Armenian Museums. Director of Yerevan Card Program Armen Baghdagyulyan briefly introduced the program and stated its main goal. According to him, the current trends of development of information technologies are gradually changing tourism and allowing for gradual increase in the number of tourists. However, most tourists prefer to organize their tours on their own through the use of the Internet and other opportunities that IT has to offer. So, this led to the creation of an innovative system such as the Yerevan Card Program. “It took two years to create the system and organize the processes, including study of the experiences of several European countries, the conclusion of contracts with over 150 partnering organizations for the conduct of marketing research in Armenia and particularly in Yerevan, the acquisition of the last generation terminals operating through the NFC technology and the provision of those terminals to partners, the conduct of training sessions, as well as the coordination, development and publication of information and several other works,” Armen Baghdagyulyan stated.

RA Deputy Minister of Culture Arev Samuelyan welcomed the start of such cooperation and considered it important. “The idea that was conceived two years ago is now a program that meets all the requirements of the global market. It is a unique program in the region in terms of its nature and the best way of presenting ourselves to the international community,” Arev Samuelyan stated. The Deputy Minister voiced hope that regional libraries would also join the 40 museums having joined the program.

Attaching importance to the program, Head of the Department of Tourism at Yerevan Municipality Gevorg Orbelyan stated that the program provides tourists with wide opportunities since the tourist pays a good price for a package and can benefit from all the services with one card. “It is wonderful when such programs are implemented through the combined efforts of government agencies,” Gevorg Orbelyan added.

In his turn, First Vice-Chairperson of the State Tourism Committee of the RA Ministry of Economic Development and Investments Mekhak Apresyan said the program serves as a wonderful way to be presented correspondingly in the global market. According to him, the effectiveness of any program depends on active cooperation, and there is active cooperation in the implementation of this program.

Director of the National Gallery of Armenia Arman Tsaturyan attached importance to the implementation of this program and stated that it is the result of large-scale efforts. According to him, there are many ideas and programs that are never complete, but this program is unique in that it is now a reality.

Let us also mention that the card comes with a substantial guideline (135 pages, in 3 languages), a map of the city of Yerevan, a mobile phone card with free Internet, 12-hour information service and a Yerevan Card mobile app. With the help of these features, tourists can organize their tours on their own and be informed about the cultural institutions in the city, the places of leisure and upcoming events. Thus, this is a program that will provide the opportunity to enhance city and cultural tourism in Yerevan and various other places in Armenia and will help increase the level of recognizability of historical and cultural sites by increasing the number of visitors and incomes.

The presentation was followed by the signing of a memorandum of cooperation between Global Colibri LLC and Yerevan Municipality.