Part Two of Four: 101 ways to use mobile messages in travelNewsBy Viewpoints | October 13, 2010Share This article was originally published on NB: This is a guest post by Pieter de Villiers, CEO of Clickatell, a US-based specialist in mass-micro messaging to organisations in more than 220 countries and territories.Today we look at another 25 examples including initiatives by tourist boards and translation services.26. A new US service Dial Directions sends travel directions straight to a mobile phone via text message after using voice-recognition technology to determine current location and the intended destination. Users dial a number and speak their starting location and destination and the service instantly sends turn-by-turn driving directions by text message.27.Yahoo Driving Directions, which supplies block-by-block driving instructions, now has an option to receive instructions via SMS. By clicking on the website “send to phone” button, driving instructions are sent to the handset. Users receive a text message with a link to the full turn-by-turn driving directions.28. Transport for London (TfL) offers a mobile service that allows consumers to see when a service is disrupted on specific tube lines. Passengers are able to send a text message to a premium rate number to get a status update. An SMS service is also available for Airport Express trains to Gatwick, Heathrow and Stansted. This service is free of charge and available to customers who book a train ticket via the web.29. Navteq, a digital map, traffic and location data provider, offers driving tips and traffic information to travelling consumers. For users who don’t have time to get on the web or are too busy to call the hotline, Navteq has set up a text messaging system to deliver real-time traffic information for different cities. By sending a text message with the user’s city code such as NY for New York or CHIC for Chicago to short code, the user will receive traffic information in their area.30. An ambitious free text-messaging system that the Metropolitan Transportation Authority of New York launched in 2008, allows riders to stay informed about transit delays with "near-real-time" SMS alerts to users.31. Passengers with SNCF French railways can now make use of an SMS service that enables travellers to find out whether the train is on time, delayed or cancelled by sending the message INFO to a number and receive a text message response which includes the status of the train.32. Customers of the Metropolitan Transport Authority (MTA) Long Island Rail Road can get train schedules and details of specific travel requests sent to their mobile phones via text message e.g. "Penn to Huntington" texted to 266266 returns train schedules instantly.33. The British High Commission in India launched a service for Indians travelling to the United Kingdom that allows them to track their visa applications through an easy and convenient service over their mobile phone. Applicants can now access their visa application status by sending an SMS from any mobile phone.34. Textamundo is an SMS question & answer service that enables travellers in around 200 countries to quickly get answers to questions they need while on the road.35. The Beijing Tourism Bureau sends welcoming informational text messages to tourists, as soon as they cross the borders of the Beijing municipality. Information on transportation, accommodation, shopping, restaurants and entertainment, along with a warm welcome is provided as part of this service.36. World of Fun in Kansas launched the "Text Connection" services, which sends up to 10 text messages every day to the mobile phones of park guests, with information on live show times, short ride queues, and other park attractions and deals. Visitors can sign up for the free service up to two weeks in advance, or at the gate as they enter the park.37. Rome city council introduced a service that allows readers to search the catalogues of the capital’s 35 public libraries via SMS. By sending a text message, it’s possible to receive information on the location of a particular book, CD or video, library hours or ask the librarians a specific question.38. Handheld History was a service that allowed people to use mobile phones to access the historical information behind London's famous Blue Plaques. The Blue Plaques, which are on buildings all over London, commemorate the achievements of hundreds of notable men and women who lived and worked in the city for all or some of their lives. By texting a designated short code users were able to receive a basic history of the plaques by SMS. Handheld history also entertained visitors while they’re waiting in the queue for Madame Tussauds Wax Museum, by sending text message snippets of facts about various events.39.Blackpool Illuminations offered visitors the chance to see their own name in lights in 2005. Using an interactive text system, text messages were displayed by laser on a 100 foot by 20 foot screen on Blackpool Promenade. The service was a partnership between a mobile entertainment company and the Blackpool City Council. Visitors could also enter a special competition to win the chance to turn off the 2005 Illuminations on Sunday November the 6th by texting in the answer to a simple question. The winner and their family also received a two-night break at the Hilton Hotel in Blackpool and attraction tickets.40. A service from MasterCard provides cardholders with a mobile, location-based search and directory service so they can request the location of the nearest ATM be sent to their cell phone via text message. Customers call and state their coordinates to request the location of the nearest MasterCard ATM. Each year, two million cardholders contact MasterCard via either telephone or the website specifically to find the location of nearby ATMs; some 70% of inquiries are received from international travellers venturing outside their home country.41. An SMS service launched in Shanghai allows users to locate the nearest public restroom. In response to a text message, the system sends a reply SMS with information on the location of the nearest public restroom. The SMS also includes information such as whether or not the conveniences are free of charge. The system is mainly for tourists.42. The Finnish Road Administration developed a system that enables travellers to open the doors to roadside toilets only by sending an SMS to numbers provided by the Road Administration. Opening the door costs just the normal SMS rate.43. Mobile phones were first used in Kuwana, Japan during the first experiment to transmit and receive sightseeing information via SMS. The service now allows mobile phone users to add their comments in real-time via text message, for the benefit other tourists.44. A service launched by Linguistic Agents in Israel in March 2007, called “Info Jew” allows Jews to use their mobile phones to find synagogues, kosher restaurants, Chabad houses, mikvehs (ritual purification baths) as well as the exact times for prayers, Shabbatot and holidays anywhere in the world. The service aims to add to this selection, information on local rabbis and Jewish tourist sites.45. The Dutch motoring organisation ANWB and Van Dale, a prominent dictionary publisher, launched an SMS-based service that translates between French, German, English, Spanish, and Dutch. For example, a user in a French restaurant can discover in Dutch exactly what the specialty for 55 Euro cents is by typing the French word into an SMS message and sending it to ‘ANWB'. The sender will receive its Dutch equivalent back in seconds.46. Tourists travelling to Thailand can now communicate with local people through an SMS-based English-to-Thai translation service.47. South African insurance company Metropolitan Life introduced a life insurance service called Cover2Go, using Clickatell. The service costs are deducted from the subscriber’s airtime balance and provides instant life insurance for six days, in the event of accidental death.48. The father of murdered Briton Lucie Blackman, launched a safety service using text messaging that allows users to submit detailed travel plans and set a time delay of between 30 minutes and 24 hours. If they have not returned and cancelled the message by the deadline, an SMS alert is sent to a chosen friend or relative. The Safetytext service stores photographs, contact details and the names of friends and relatives, to be released to police if it becomes necessary.49. PlanetReunited allowed backpackers or regular travellers to post news of their whereabouts and wellbeing onto a SLOG by SMS (a Slog is like a Blog, but it uses SMS technology to update]. Users could sign up for the free Slog service and send messages to its phone number. Messages were posted up sequentially on a web page, much like with a blog. PlanetReunited sent out email alerts to friends and family every time a new message is posted.50. Hail-Safer is a text messaging system that allows a taxi or minicab passenger to use their mobile phone to register details of the cab they are travelling in, and the license number of the driver via SMS or voice call. Travellers text the word SAFE followed by a space and the cab license number to a dedicated number. This information is then logged on the service.Tomorrow's edition features the hotel and restaurant sectors. Part One: 1.25Part Three: 51-75Part Four: 76-101NB: This is a guest post by Pieter de Villiers, CEO of Clickatell, a US-based specialist in mass-micro messaging to organisations in more than 220 countries and territories.