Busy crowds not a problem for City Wonders and the Antenna Group Tour System

City Wonders
Country: United Kingdom
City: London
Institution Type: General
Year Founded: 2004
Content Type: Groups
Tour Type: Adult
Exhibit Functionalities: GTS
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Client Testimonial

“Overall, Antenna provide such great service. Based on our requirements, they are the only company that can truly meet our needs.” –  Slawek Kukielka from the City Wonders London team.

Client Profile

City Wonders provides exciting tours across major European cities. As one of the most sought-after tour groups in Europe, City Wonder prides itself on offering exceptional guides and excellent customer service. As a result, they are the most-booked tour in the world on TripAdvisor.

Challenge

When City Wonders opened its London office in 2014, they knew they needed new tour technology. Visiting popular tourist destinations such as Westminster Abbey and Buckingham Palace, where millions of people visit each year, and thousands flood the property each day, City Wonders required an efficient, easy-to-use system. This technology would need to support their tour guide staff in crowd control and ensure that their guests could hear tour guides in busy and loud outdoor environments. The tech could not, however, interfere with the authentic tour experiences, impede the guides’ professional tour delivery, or complicate the overall tour for guests. Bulky, heavy equipment, for example, was an absolute no-no.

As a result of working with Antenna International at the Vatican for over a decade, City Wonders approached them to discuss what tour technology was both available and possible to deploy in their new London-based guided tours. Antenna determined that City Wonders would most benefit from a Group Tour System for their business.

Solution

Antenna provided a Group Tour System to City Wonders for their 2014 London launch. The microphone & audio headset system was more lightweight than any other device available. This feature was a major plus for City Wonders as they did not want to burden their tour attendees with bulky equipment to lug around one of the world’s busiest cities. Delivered to guests before each tour in branded City Wonders bags, guests can easily carry around their headsets on their tour, using them whenever necessary.

City Wonders and Antenna also prepared apprehensive tour guides who were accustomed to not using any technology on their tours. Guides, who felt confident in using their voice, quickly saw the benefits of using the Group Tour System to not only have better communication on excursions but also to manage crowd control.

“If someone goes missing on the tour, we can call the customer on the device to locate them. The crowds around places like Westminster are very busy. These devices help move our groups from one place to another, seamlessly. For guides, they no longer have to shout above larger crowds or competing groups. Guests can take pictures while listening to their guides speak. Before the group tour system, our guides were only really able to chat with the people who walked right next to them on the tour. Now, they can fill in so much more commentary, encouraging more engagement from every guest. We strongly believe that because of this our guests get more value for their money.” Shares Slawek Kukielka from the City Wonders London team.

City Wonders these devices, twice a day during peak tourist season.  For the hearing impaired, Antenna provides City Wonders with no-fuss over-ear headphones for members to easily place over in-ear hearing aids.

Outcome

The Group Tour System is an integral part of the City Wonders business.

“It is a selling point on our tour,” Slawek notes “It’s important to us as an organisation to always offer something new and different to our guests. In 2014, no one was using this equipment. Now in 2018, you look around London, and every group has it. We try to stay innovative, and Antenna helped us lead the way.”

Guests of City Wonders have also left positive reviews of their experience with the devices as well:

“You’re given a headset so you can hear the tour guide… your guide explains and shows so much more… It completely immerses you. My 8 and 11-year-old hung in there for the entire 3-hour tour and were never bored, which is really saying something.” Visitor, Pennsylvania 2018

“The walking tour was done in small groups and a headset was provided by the tour guide – a very nice Irish man named Robert – the headset allowed you to hear what he was saying during the outside walking tour around the palace.” Visitor, New York 2018

“The headsets were light and comfortable and made it easy to understand and listen from all areas- you didn’t have to bunch up together. I highly recommend.” Visitor, Florida 2018

About Us

We are innovative storymakers and creative technologists devoted to visitor-first experiences.

We make audio tours, mobile apps, multimedia guides, podcasts, interactives, and superior story-driven content for the museum and cultural sector.

UK Office

The Office Group
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United Kingdom

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USA
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