Kyoto Tourism Industry Launches 10-Language Telephone Interpretation Service for Businesses
KYOTO — The tourism industry in this former Japanese capital has launched a telephone interpretation service in 10 languages after the central government significantly eased pandemic border restrictions for incoming tourists.
The Kyoto City Tourism Association and the Kyoto Convention Bureau jointly launched the first of its kind service for businesses on October 15. free telephone interpreting service when they have difficulty communicating with customers in foreign languages.
The call center’s mandated interpreters can answer in Thai, Cantonese, French, Russian and Vietnamese between 10:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. and in English, Mandarin, Korean, Spanish and Portuguese 24 hours a day.
The tourism association expects the service to be used in situations where quick and accurate responses are needed, such as when overseas visitors are struggling to pay fees or their luggage is lost. A representative of the association said, “Although interpretation services using artificial intelligence are spreading, having a human interpreter will increase the sense of security and allow foreign tourists to enjoy tourism in Kyoto.
The service will be available until the end of March 2023, but will be extended if well received.
(Japanese original by Norikazu Chiba, Kyoto Office)