SINGAPORE: Physical touchpoints will be set up across the island for Singaporeans who need help making bookings with the SingapoRediscovers vouchers, said Minister of State for Trade and Industry Alvin Tan on Tuesday (Nov 3).
Mr Tan was responding to a parliamentary question from West Coast GRC Member of Parliament Ang Wei Neng on options for Singaporeans who do not know how to use the digital tourism vouchers.
“The Government is cognisant that some seniors may need help with accessing the SingapoRediscovers vouchers via Singpass. While we encourage all Singaporeans to register for a Singpass account if they have not already done so, and redeem the vouchers digitally, we will provide some physical touchpoints for those who need them,” said Mr Tan.
Booking platforms for the SingapoRediscovers vouchers, including Klook Travel Technology with UOB Travel Planners, Changi Travel Services and GlobalTix, will offer both digital and physical touchpoints, he added.
“Singapore citizens who require help making their bookings for tourism products can seek assistance at physical touchpoints provided by these platforms. These physical touchpoints will span the island to make it easier for people to access them.”
The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) is working with the People’s Association (PA) to supplement this with physical touchpoints at some community centres. STB will also set up a hotline to handle public enquiries and feedback, said Mr Tan.
Announced in September, every Singaporean aged 18 and above in 2020 will receive S$100 worth of SingapoRediscovers vouchers, which can be used for staycations, attraction tickets and tours.
The vouchers will be available for redemption via SingPass, between Dec 1, 2020, and end-June 2021. Information on the redemption process and list of authorised platforms will be mailed to Singapore citizens before the vouchers are rolled out.
Addressing concerns on how to avoid fraudulent use of the digital vouchers, Mr Tan said the use of SingPass will “provide secure authentication” for voucher distribution and help mitigate fraud.
Individuals should keep their SingPass account details confidential and not share their one-time password with others. They should also be careful of unsolicited text messages or web links that direct them to “suspicious portals” claiming to be SingapoRediscovers booking platforms to avoid falling prey to scams, he added.
“Members of the public are advised to make purchases from only authorised platforms. And the ambassador at the physical touchpoints will also remind seniors of the above safeguards,” said the Minister of State.
“STB will conduct regular checks and audits and leverage data analytics to flag out suspicious transactions for further investigations and cases of fraud will be reported to the police.”
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In a supplementary question, MP Melvin Yong asked if the Ministry of Trade and Industry plans to work with vendors to create senior-exclusive tours that are redeemable with the SingapoRediscovers vouchers, and to hold them at off-peak hours to reduce crowds.
To help seniors who are staying alone or have little social support, STB will explore working with social service organisations and the PA to facilitate the usage of the vouchers, said Mr Tan. This could include organising small group tours for seniors.
Booking platforms could also come up with packages targeted at families or seniors, and bundle them with F&B and retail options, he added.
“We hope that all Singaporeans will get to enjoy the SingapoRediscovers vouchers and take some time off from what has been a very busy and difficult year for many of us.”