Developers Working On A New Edition of The Route 66 Passport For The 2020/2021 Season
KINGMAN, AZ – October 30, 2019 – The Route 66 Passport introduced by Marián Pavel and Jan Švrček of Touch Media prior to the 2019 summer season is changing the way people travel on Route 66 and is providing visitor centers, museums and other participating locations with a powerful marketing tool. Numerous participants in the program have reported a 40 to 60 percent increase in the number of visitors resultant of the passport. The success of the project developed in limited partnership with Jim Hinckley of Jim Hinckley's America, artist Joyce Harbin Cole and Dries Bessels of the Dutch Route 66 Association has surpassed all expectations.
The passport has also proven a benefit to the Route 66 community as travelers report planning their itinerary to get all the stamps in their passport and to staying overnight in the communities when they arrive after closure of visitor centers. Other travelers have confirmed that they are making plans for a return trip to collect stamps missing from their passports. Many Route 66 Passport partners that capitalize on the unique promotional tool are accommodating visitors by arranging for stamps at nearby hotels or even at the local police station after scheduled operating hours. Businesses, museums, and other locations not affiliated with the passport program are offering tourists a stamp on a dedicated “Notes” page. Travelers also use these pages to customize their passport by collecting autographs from Route 66 celebrities, authors, artists, and business owners.
Because the passport is an easily identifiable souvenir that tourists buy at the start of their journey, for the first time sales statistics from around 50 selling points will identify where travelers join Route 66. This data is crucial for development of a better understanding of Route 66 travel which can then be used to facilitate the effective adjustment of services offered. This information and other statistics pertaining to Route 66 derived from the sale of the passport will be published at the end of 2019.
Tentative plans are to add approximately 40 participating locations to the passport program in the 2020/2021 edition. This would be in addition to the partners who supported the first edition including Uranus Fudge Factory in St. Robert, Missouri and Mother Road Market of Tulsa, Oklahoma. The additional locations will be selected with an emphasis on availability of tourist services, with priority being given to visitor centers and museums that can support local tourism by serving as a portal to businesses as well as hotels or restaurants.
Marian Pavel and Jan Švrček are currently traveling Route 66, testing updates made to the Route 66 Navigation app, another product developed by Touch Media, and evaluating additional locations for the 2020 passport. Interested parties can contact the passport developers at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. Feedback from the passport program is posted on the Route 66 Navigation website.