Author: Sarah Pounders

Houston City Tours

Houston City Tours Offers More Tours To More Guests

The Tours

Houston City Tours in Houston, Texas is well known for their red double decker buses that have been offering tours in Houston since 2014.  Their high quality tours, amazing customer service and consistently positive reviews have caused them to grow.  Now, they offer tours not only Houston, but also Galveston, Texas, Austin, Texas and a tour to the LBJ Nasa Space Center outside of Houston.


The Tour Buddy App

Houston City Tours offers more tours to more guests by using the Tour Buddy App for GPS triggered narration over the loudspeaker.  By automating parts of the tour with consistent high quality narration, they are able to give an awesome tour every time.  This allows the live guides on the bus to focus on guests’ needs and give additional narration without having to recite an entire tour repeatedly for every group.



Interested in using the Tour Buddy App for your tours?



Contact US

Article about creating a branded app or adding a tour to the tour buddy historic tours app

Release Your Own App Or Be Part Of The Tour Buddy Historic Tours App

Launching an app tour is an important step for many organizations to rounding out a digital strategy that reaches more guests.  Once an organization decides to offer an app to their guests, the next question is usually, “Do we want our tour to be available through a branded app to our organization or included in a larger app?”  Let’s explore the benefits and challenges for both options.


App Store and Google Play icons

Branded App For Your Organization


Creating a branded app (also known as a white label app) for your organization means that the home icon and every aspect once the app is downloaded shows your brand’s colors, images and messaging.  There are no traces of Tour Buddy in your app at all.  Even the developer account under which you launch your app will be your organization’s developer account.  Your app’s name and your keywords will be searchable on the App Store and Google Play with screenshots that show your app.


A branded app is very easy to find on the App Store and Google Play by simply searching the name of the app.  Users only see your organization as the developer and owner of the app and your organization can also charge for the app (excluding organizations that register as non-profits).


Your organization will have to open an Apple and Google Developer Account (over $300/year) and the process for publishing the app takes longer (around 2 weeks).  Price is also a factor with branded app options costing between $3,000 – $8,000 for the first year.




Include Your Tour in The Tour Buddy Historic Tours App


Including your tour in the Tour Buddy Historic Tours App will allow users who download the Tour Buddy Historic Tours App to download your tour through the larger Tour Buddy Historic Tours App.  The list of tours will sort based on miles away from where the users is located (closest tours show up first in list).


Your tour will be listed with other high quality tours all over the world.  Launch your tour in the Tour Buddy Historic Tours App is a fast process (24 – 48 hours) and being listed with other tours gives your tour more exposure. Pricing is affordable for non-profits and smaller organizations at $500/year.


Your tour name is not searchable on the App Store and Google Play.  Users have to download the Tour Buddy Historic Tours App and then download your tour.  Unable to charge for tours in this app.



Still not sure which option is best for your organization?

Set Up A Call


How to QR Code

What is that little square-shaped black and white symbol? And how does it help get more users for my App?  These are common questions about using a QR code to help promote your app whether you are using the Tour Buddy App, Tour Buddy Historic Tours,  or your own standalone App.

How does it work?

The QR code contains a direct link to your App so your guests don’t have to search within the App Store and Google Play.  The guest will open the camera on their device and only view the QR code through that lens. The iOS or Android device will automatically scan the code and open the App Store or Google Play listing depending on the operating system of the users device. The user can then easily download the app and begin use.

How does it help my App?

There can be confusion for guests to find the correct app.  The QR code takes away that confusion while saving time and aggravation.  This is a valuable tool that all guests will appreciate.  We recommend this awesome QR code create that creates just 1 link for both Android and iOS apps:

Here is a detailed article that goes in depth on creating QR codes in general: How to Make a QR Code.

Want more information on how Tour Buddy Apps can help your organization?

Contact us now

Holiday Tour of Homes, Savannah, GA


Savannah Downtown Neighborhood Association (DNA) is hosting their 44th annual Tour of Homes on Saturday, December 8th 2018 to benefit Savannah community non-profits.  This highly anticipated event allows guests to look “behind the doors” at stunning examples of Savannah grandeur, featuring eight private homes, three inns and two museum homes. New this year, to enhance this memorable tour the DNA has created an app to help guests maximize their experience.  This app is included with other historic apps on the Tour Buddy Historic Tours App available for free on the App Store and Google Play.



The App

The app contains not only information on the homes and inns but also local hotels, restaurants, and merchants.  The DNA utilized the easy to use App Builder website on the Tour Buddy platform to create their tour.  The anticipation is building and guests from across the country will have all the tour information for these locations and more, all at their finger tips. There are tickets available now to see these magnificent homes dressed in their holiday best.



See how easy it is to create and launch a tour in the Tour Buddy Historic Tours App

Learn More

How to create a script of your tour

As a tour operator, you know your crowd.  You have your script timed and perfectly recorded in your mind.  But, if you are ready to expand and add more tour guides or start using an app – how do you create a tour script?  Let’s look at some options that don’t involve pen and paper!

Step 1: Record yourself

As you give your tour, record yourself.  You can do it on a live tour, but it might be best to do it alone so you are not interrupted.  How do you record yourself?

  • iphone – use the built in voice recorder.  It’s called ‘Voice Memos.’
  • Android phone – use any voice recording app.  Here is a good one>>

Break up your recordings into the ‘stops’ for your tour so that you don’t have to break it up at the end.  So if you have a tour with 10 stops, you should have 10 audio files.

Step 2: Transcribe your audio files

There are so many options for services to transcribe your audio.  For around 20 minutes of audio the cost is about $20.  You can price your tour out, but it’s not very pricey.  Services you can use to transcribe:

Step 3: Format your script

After you receive your transcription, we like to format the script so that it is easy to read and if you are getting it translated, you will want a clean format.  You can use a WordDoc and insert a table and then label the table.  Here is a sample we created – and you are totally welcome to steal it!

Download the Sample:

Sample Script Format

Want more information on how Tour Buddy Apps helps tour operators provide an even better guest experience?

Contact us now

Increasing app downloads with Facebook Ads

See our interview with marketing specialist and Facebook Ads guru, Lisa Kanda


Creating the content for an app and launching it takes a team of people working together.  But, once the app is launched getting users to download it is key for success.  The team at Tour Buddy Apps wants your app to be successful.  If you haven’t check out our article on 6 Ways to Get More Downloads, check it out.  But, after you have checked all your boxes on marketing on your website and on site, how can you get even more downloads?  That’s where you can use Facebook Ads.

Download E-Book Now

Want to connect with Lisa at Elkay Advisors?

Connect here>>

Opening a developer account on the App Store and Google Play

We are looking forward to launching your app!

Part of that process requires you to open a developer account with Apple and Google.  It’s an easy process, but can take up to 2 weeks (or longer for non-profits).

Here are step by step instructions for the App Store and Google Play:


Click here:

Instructions to open developer account for Non-Profits*


Click here:

Instructions to open developer account for buisnesses


*Please note that if you plan to make your app paid, you can NOT register as a non-profit.  You must register as a business.


Offline Video App feature

Streaming video is the norm in many of the most downloaded apps and engagement for video can be remarkably high.  Tour Buddy Apps incorporated streaming video well over 2 years ago, but as more clients offer unique experiences, we have developed the capability for offline video.

Not only can viewers watch video without the internet in the Tour Buddy App, but the video content can be triggered by a location so that it plays automatically when users have the app open.  The offline video experience allows users to be out of range of cell data capabilities but still have an immersive experience with media.

This feature is especially useful for tour operators who travel in remote areas and want to show guests video footage of the tour’s historical points of interest.

Ready to offer video offline to your guests?  Contact us now!

Web App Tours for desktop computers, tablets and smartphones just added!

Apps have changed the world we live in – no doubt.  But, an app is not always the solution for everything.  That’s why we have just added a web app to our arsenal of products.  The content for the web app, just like our iOS and Android apps, comes from the user friendly App Builder Website.  Now a walking tour, city guide or event tour can be accessed through a URL in the browser.


Here are some key questions to understanding a web app and how it can work for various situations.


What is a web app?

A web app is an application that can be accessed through the internet.  It’s basically a webpage with functionality similar to an app.  All you need is a web address – no download necessary.


How is a web app different from an app?

You do NOT have to download a web app.  It runs on the internet in the browser.  It can also be viewed on any device with a browser like a desktop computer.  An app (like ours for iOS and Android) must be downloaded.  Apps for the App Store and Google Play are not compatible with desktop computers. Once our iOS and Android app is downloaded it does not require the internet.


What are the benefits of a web app?

Lots. Users do not have to download a web app.  The web app can be viewed on a desktop computer and users can take a virtual tour from their desktop.


What are the limitations of a web app?

You MUST have internet.  In the mountains with spotty internet?  Bad idea.  In a city with citywide wifi available – perfect solution.


Contact us now to launch your web app:


Single Use Passcodes Now Available

Tour Buddy Apps listens to clients to help them reach more visitors and users in a variety of industries.  A feature that has become increasingly important is privacy and controlling who consumes their content.  For over 2 years, Tour Buddy has offered a private sign-in for branded apps.  Now, clients can increase privacy with single use passcodes that can only be used on one device.

Here are just a few examples of how single use download codes can be used:

Tour Operators

Tour operators can offer a mobile app as an “add-on” to their guests.  The mobile app can provide additional tours or foreign language tours to guests who take the tour.  Guests would download the tour operator’s app and then enter the download code in the sign-in.  Guests would not be able to share their passcode with anyone else because once the passcode is used on a device, it can not be used again on a different device.


Special Events

Organizations who want limit how many people and/or who downloads their content can use single use passcodes.  Particularly for paid events or experiences, organizations offer the single use passcode to access the tour after guests have paid.


Books and Paper Map Tours

Book publishers and producers of paper maps can create and offer a digital tour to people who purchase their products.  The book or map would have download instructions and the username and single use passcode for the consumer to download the content.  This information would be written in its material and only accessible to people who buy the product.


Interested in using single use passcodes for your location, event or book?  Contact us now!


How to Present your Mobile App

We work with clients daily to help them understand how their organization can benefit from offering a mobile app.  Many times, the individuals who we work with must present the possibility of a mobile app to their organization before any decisions are made.  See our step by step instructions to presenting a mobile app to a large group.


How to create your presentation.


Take a Video

There are several ways to capture a video of your app in action.

  • For iOS devices.  iOS has a built in screen recorder (which we think it super easy and we use it ALL the time).  Here are the steps to adding the screen recorder to your control panel and how to take a video on your iOS device>>
  • For Android devices.  You can download one of the many screen recording apps to your Android device and then take your video. We suggest the AZ Screen Recorder.  Check out the AZ Screen Recorder App for Android>>
  • Use Reflector.  Reflector is a program that you download to your computer (MAC or PC) and you connect your phone through airplay or google cast and reflector will record your video directly onto your computer.  It’s not free ($14.99 at time of publishing) but you can use reflector live in your presentation if you don’t want to show a video.  Check it out>>

    Take a Screenshot

    Screenshots are snapshots of what is on your phone’s screen.

  • See how to take a screenshot on iOS. 
  • Learn how to do markup on your screenshot.  This is a great way to highlight features that are important to your organization.
  • See how to take a screenshot on Android.  You may need to google this for your particular Android.Transfer your video/screenshots to your computer

Upload your video/screenshot to your computer

  • If you created the video on your phone, now you have to transfer the file to your computer so that you can display it.  You can use Dropbox, Google Drive or even through e-mail to upload your file to your computer.

Display your video/screenshots

Now that you have your file on your computer, you will need to display your computer screen.

What else do we suggest?

  • Impact.  Talk about how the app will help offer self guided tours, provide valuable information to more guests, digitize content and help with wayfinding (just to name a few)
  • Stability.  We have been in the mobile app space for 8 years with over 100 apps on the App Store and Google Play.  We can offer a long term solution.
  • Easy to manage.  Changes are automatic and updating the app is as easy as using e-mail.  No developers to contact or code needed to maintain and change your app.

Launch your tour in the Tour Buddy Historic Tours App

The Tour Buddy Historic Tours App gives organizations an easy cost effective way to digitize their tours into a mobile app tour. Historical societies, towns and local experts have created various tours available in the Tour Buddy Historic Tours App.  Historic locations such as downtown Sacramento, California, Concord, Massachusetts and Alexandria, Virginia are featured in the app.

How the Tour Buddy Historic Tours App works:

  1. See how the App Builder Works and sign up for the 30 day free trial.
  2. Upload your tour content including images, text, audio, GPS points and urls.
  3. Preview your tour on your iOS or Android device.  
  4. Contact Tour Buddy to launch your guide in the Tour Buddy Historic Tours App.

Launching your tour:

  • Users download the Tour Buddy Historic Tours App on the App Store or Google Play.
  • The guides will sort by distance away from the user.  The tour that is closest to the user will be first and then be sorted by distance away.
  • Users can download and use your tour immediately after it is launched.

Using the Tour Buddy Historic Tours App

When a user first downloads the app, it will ask to track their location.  The tours will then filter to show the user the tour closest to where they are located.   All the tours have the capability of offline audio, images, video, text, clickable links and social sharing.  The user can also choose to turn ‘ON’ the GPS Auto Play for a hands free audio tour experience.

Any changes made to the tour on the App Builder Website are automatic.  Users will be promtped to “refresh” the guide content after the tour on the App Builder Website is updated.


Contact us now with any questions or sign up today.


How is an offline gps app even possible?

Are you interested in creating an offline gps app tour?  Awesome!

You may need your app to be offline or you may like the idea of not making users pay for data.  This is typical.  Tours often take place in remote areas that may not have cell reception.

Our GPS App is Offline.  Really.

How does an offline GPS App work?

Our gps app works with the GPS hardware in your smartphone or 4G capable tablet.  The GPS hardware communicates with satellites, not the internet.  it does NOT rely on the internet.  You do NOT need an internet connection for the app to know where you are and to trigger audio automatically.  This experience works 100% offline.

Are we sure?  Yep.  We have clients who go up and down volcanoes, give tours on large bodies of water and who use our app in the desert.

Will an ipod or wifi only tablet work?  NO.  These devices do not work because they are wifi-only devices do not have GPS hardware.  Wifi only devices can “kind of” figure out where the user is located with a wifi connection.  If you take a wifi only device to the middle of no where without wifi connection, the device will not be able to track where it is.

So the internet is not necessary for the GPS App Tour to work and trigger audio automatically?  No, internet connection not required.  But, for our clickable GPS Map to work, you do need to be connected to the internet.

Want to try it out for yourself?  You can sign up for the 30 day free trial and see how it works.

NEW Web Tour App for desktops and smartphones coming soon!

Tour Buddy Apps continues to innovate and grow with the needs of clients and soon users will be able to access tours through their browser!  YES, the browser – without downloading an app!

Why is this big?  Well, a browser experience does not require the user to download anything – and the user can see it on their desktop too.

We still loves apps and think they are AWESOME because the user can view the content OFFLINE.  But, the browser is great for areas that have full access to wifi or for users who may want to view the tour without downloading an app.

Want to be contacted when the Web App is ready?

11th Annual Savannah Book Festival App Now Available

The Savannah Book Festival is happening February 15-18, 2018 for the 11th annual year.  It is free and open to the public. Festival Saturday now features over 40 authors appearing at seven venues around three historic squares in beautiful downtown Savannah.  To help the attendees from all over the US optimize festival Saturday, the Savannah Book Festival created an app using the Tour Buddy Apps platform.  The app gives users the opportunity to see the schedule and learn about featured authors and their books.  The app is now available on the App Store and Google Play

The App

The Savannah Book Festival saw an opportunity to digitize their content by adding an app to their festival.  The Savannah Book Festival App allows users to not only see the full schedule, but also the exact location of each venue.  Users can use the GPS map to click on the various venues and choose “Get Directions” so that they can get walking/driving directions to each location.  One of the biggest draws of the festival, coming to see the authors and learning about new books, is made easier with the app because users can click on links to read more about books and authors directly from the app.  The app includes an interactive GPS map as well as a custom map created for the festival to help navigate the seven venues.  The delicious and enticing Food Truck and Eatery information is also available with the full list of food trucks on site.

Catch the highlights of the 10th Annual Savannah Book Festival


To create an app for your festival contact Tour Buddy Apps.




The Geekend App is here for the 2018 Geekend Conference in Savannah, GA

The Geekend App for iOS and Android devices helps attendees navigate the Geekend Conference February 2 – 3, 2018, in Savannah, Georgia. This intentionally interdisciplinary conference brings together cutting-edge tech and creative visionaries who will inspire attendees with startups and innovative thinking to grow and scale any business.   As one of the Creative Coast’s signature events, the Geekend conference started in 2009 and has been part of a creative renaissance and revitalization in Savannah.


With the Geekend App, attendees can decide which awesome session they want to attend each day. Users can navigate from a session on ‘Designing for the Future of AR/VR’ to another on ‘Cryptocurrency Crash Course.’   Attendees will be inspired at sessions and make connections with other artists, entrepreneurs, educators and techies at Happy Hours or the Closing ProjectMQ Indie Game Awards on Saturday night. The Geekend App also includes push notifications to communicate with attendees for interactive voting and real time messages.


Don’t miss your chance to meet the people behind Savannah’s hottest products, experiences and companies!  Tickets are still available here. Check out the Geekend App today on the App Store and Google Play.



Media and Weblinks in Your Guide

Media and Weblinks engage users longer

Including audio and video in your mobile app tour allows users to listen, watch and experience the story you are telling.  Users can listen to audio as they walk around a location or watch a video for a deeper understanding about a point of interest.  These elements keep users in an app longer than just text and create an interactive experience.  Clickable weblinks and clickable phone numbers also help users get more information or interact with a point of interest in real time within the app.


Media and Weblinks are great for guides with:

  • An Audio Tour
  • A Video Tour
  • A Virtual Tour

Want to see how media and weblinks work on the App Builder Platform?

Click here to see a video that shows the audio feature on the App Builder.

Click here to see a video that shows the video feature on the App Builder.

Click here to see a video that shows the weblinks feature on the App Builder.

GPS and Custom Maps in Your Guide

GPS and Custom Maps connect your content, location and users

Telling your story with a guide created on the App Builder platform gives you the opportunity to paint a complete picture of your location.  Users can see where each point of interest is located on the GPS enabled map as well as where they are located on the same map to get directions or scroll through stops and listen to audio.  Custom maps that are usually found in brochures or are printed give users another view of a location that is curated for a specific experience.  Both maps give a sense of place, context and navigation as they experience a tour on location or from anywhere.


GPS and Custom Maps are great for guides with:

  • Driving Tours
  • Walking Tours
  • Facility (Indoor) Tours
  • Museum Tours
  • Events


Want to see how the GPS Map and Custom Map work on the App Builder Platform?

Click here to see a video that shows the GPS map feature on the App Builder.

Click here to see a video that shows the Custom map feature on the App Builder.

Multiple Lists and Categories in Your Guide

Why Multiple Lists and Categories can benefit your guide

As you create your guide on the App Builder Platform, thinking about how to organize your content usually is one of the first things to consider.  The multiple lists/categories feature is a great way to include different tours or themes in one guide. Users can have an even richer experience as they interact with your content according to location or theme.

Multiple Categories and Lists are great for guides with:

  • Multiple Tours
  • Multiple Themes
  • Multiple Languages
  • Event Schedules
  • Sponsors

Want to see how to turn on multiple lists/categories and use them in your guide?  See this video.

Hotel App for Hotel'Apart Pegasus

Pegasus’Apart Hotel App Unlocks the best of Melbourne, Australia


The Pegasus Apart’Hotel is a full service, four star hotel offering the perfect trio of facilities, service, and location amidst the World’s Most Livable City – Melbourne, Australia.  Melbourne is thriving with so many options for restaurants, attractions, and tour opportunities that a concierge would have trouble keeping it all organized and available for the multitude of visitors.  Pegasus Apart’Hotel created this  interactive app available on the App Store and Google Play not only to enhance their guests’ experience before they arrive at the hotel but as well as during their stay in the hotel and help to unlock the best of Melbourne.


The App

Some guests may initially download the app for the basic amenity and hotel information, but they will quickly move on to check out the discounts and promotions that are currently available.  After that, they will proceed to the Melbourne attractions tab and decide whether a trip to Queen Victoria Market or Melbourne Museum is ensuing and get directions using the GPS enabled map.  Or better yet, all the local tour company details and listings are at their fingertips to browse through and consider.  There are also downloadable GPS triggered specialty walks around Melbourne that can be downloaded and used without the internet.

The hotel also wanted to digitize their restaurant and take away menu so that guests could quickly see what’s available and choose their meal.  Additional features include an easily accessible ‘Book Now’ and ‘Getting Here’ tab so that guests can add more nights to their stay and easily get directions from various points in Melbourne. The live Twitter feed from the hotel’s Twitter account adds another level of interaction to keep the guests on the pulse of the hotel.


Push Notifications

Pegasus Apart’Hotel wanted an ultimate personal touch for their guests and using push notifications helps them stay in contact with guests.  With push notifications, the hotel can place a geo-fence around the push notifications so that only guests in the hotel receive them.  Events like daily happy hour and specials are announced through the geo-fenced push notifications only to guests who are on the property.


The Tour Buddy Apps platform provided all these great features in order to help Pegasus Build a Better Visitor Experience.

Want to learn more?



Civil War Walking Tour, Alexandria, Virginia

The Boy Scout Troop 1865 developed the Alexandria War of 1812 App using the App Builder Website.  This Eagle Scout project utilized the skills and values taught in the Boy Scouts to produce an interactive app that the entire community could experience.

Explore 10 blocks of Alexandria, VA highlighting sites connected to the War of 1812 and the British occupation of the city in August of 1814.  The app includes photos, audio and extra stops only available through the app.  The Boy Scout Troop 1865 worked as individuals and as a team to create the app in order to help celebrate the anniversary of the War of 1812.


Historic Public Garden, Melbourne, Australia

The Burnley Gardens App gives a tour of one of the oldest public gardens in Melbourne, Australia. This self-guided tour takes users through 22 stops with audio that discusses specific garden beds, historical events, rare plants and our iconic trees as well as the modern elements of green infrastructure on campus. The walk will inform you about the gardens history, the design principles and current uses.  Each stop is GPS enabled, a map of the tour is provided and the stops are clearly marked in the Gardens.

Art Tour, Los Angeles, California

The Brewery Artwalk is a twice annual open studio weekend at the worlds largest art complex in downtown Los Angeles. The Artwalk takes place in the Spring and Fall, 11:00 am – 6:00 pm

Admission and parking are free. Come and support LA’s finest artists, take home some great works and dine at the on-site restaurant. Open studios are spread across the Brewery’s 16 acre campus including a few multi-story buildings. If you are inclined to see it all, we suggest you come both days.

The creation of the Brewery Arts Complex began in 1982 at the site of the Pabst Blue Ribbon Brewery. With the passing of the Artist-In-Residence code, artists could rent live/work space in industrially zoned buildings.

In July 1997, the LA Weekly called the Brewery “the world’s largest artist-in-residence community” and in a March 1999 Los Angeles Times article The Brewery was quoted as the “world’s largest art complex.” These are true lofts, in industrial buildings that are a part of what has become a uniquely vibrant and creative community

Download this free app to enjoy a self guided tour of The Brewery’s 16 acre campus, which includes information about many of the Brewery’s historic buildings as well as a list of open studios in each building.

With the Brewery Artwalk app, you’ll always have the latest information on event dates, parking, dining and more right at your fingertips.

After your App is Published

Now that the App Store and Google Play have approved your app, everyone can download your app on the App Store and Google Play.

Your app can only be downloaded onto a smartphone or tablet through the App Store (iOS devices) or Google Play (Android devices).  You can see your app’s listing through a URL on both stores on your computer, but you can not download these apps onto a desktop computer.

Here is a short video that shows where the links to your app are located on the App Builder Website:


You can go to the App Store and Google Play and search for your apps and download them at this time.


After the app is published you can change any stop information.  After you make changes to the app, you can press the ‘Update’ button in the upper right hand corner.  



App Publishing Process

We want to make the app launch process easy for you as you are finishing up adding content and nearing your launch date.  Here is all the information you need for the app publishing process.  

Step 1: All Content is uploaded and ready

When we use the word content, we are referring to your stops that you created with images, audio (if it is an audio tour), GPS points and graphics.  All of these things need to be complete so that we can send the app for approval.  

Content Checklist


Step 2: Tour Buddy Review Process  3 to 7 days

When your content is complete, you will press the “Request to Publish” button on your dashboard.  The Tour Buddy team will then review your content and test your app.  We will contact you if any content or graphics are missing or if we have any suggestions for improvement.  We will also begin preparing the listings for the App Store and Google Play.

Once the Tour Buddy team reviews the content and ensures everything is complete, your app will be sent to approval from the App Store and Google Play.  

Step 3: App Store and Google Play Release Process – 1-2 weeks

Once Tour Buddy sends your app off for review, your app will be approved within 1-2 weeks.  You will receive an e-mail with the links to the App Store and Google Play listing after they are approved.  


App Graphics and Branding Checklist

Ready to launch your app to be published on the App Store and Google Play?  Awesome!  As you know, you can change most of the content in your app, which is great.  But, there a couple of items that are connected to your branding that you can NOT change unless we re-release your app for an additional fee.  Here is the checklist of the items that you can NOT change, so be sure you are all set in the App Builder Website:

  • Official name of your app (30 character max)
  • Searchable Keywords – words that will help people find your app on the App Store and Google Play.
  • App Store Description
  • App Icon – the little rounded box on the dashboard of your phone
    • App Icon – 1024 pixels wide x 1024 pixels high  Must be high resolution PNG file.
  • Splash Images – Appears after the user clicks on the icon and while the app is loading.
    • Portrait Splash Image (shown on smartphones) – 640 x 1136 px – gets cropped to 640 x 960 for some screen sizes.
    • Landscape Splash Image (shown on iPads) – 2048 wide x 1536 high.

You can make your changes in the ‘App’ tab of the App Builder Website.  Once you have your official app graphics and branding entered and uploaded, just press the ‘Request to Publish’ button on the dashboard and we will prepare your app for release.

Building a Guide Like a PRO

Congratulations, you have just created your first guide!  You might have even created a stop or two.  We want you to build your app with confidence.  Here are some of our tips to building and understanding your app for a successful launch.


Creating Multiple Lists

A list is a category for the stops.  A list could include a different tour, or a different type of content such as a list of places to visit or restaurants.  If you aren’t sure if you need multiple lists, we like to start at the top looking at your overall tour and the organization of your content.  Some important questions to ask yourself are, “How many tours do I have?”  “Do I want my users to just focus on one tour or several tours/areas at my location?”  If it looks like you have several tours or areas, we recommend creating different categories for your stops.  Then, you will create your stops and put each stop into a category.  This helps organize your guide in a way that flows with your content.  For some guides with just one tour, we recommend keeping the categories OFF and then a list of stops will be displayed.  You can add multiple lists at any time so if you’re not sure if you need them, just start creating stops.  



Creating GPS Points

GPS points in the app are created using the map on the App Builder Website.  When a stop has a GPS point in the App Builder, then the user can turn ‘ON’ the GPS triggers and when they walk within 250 feet of the point of interest, the stop will automatically open and the audio will automatically play.

Do you see the map where you create a pin for each stop?  That is your GPS point.  You can drag and drop the pin anywhere you want.  We recommend that the GPS points are 250 feet (50 meters) apart.  Closer than that, and they may overlap.



Testing GPS Triggers

If you want your tour to automatically open a stop and play audio when the user gets near it, you will need to test the GPS triggers. To test the GPS triggers, you need to download your app content through the Tour Buddy App (see instructions here).  Once you download your content, you will turn ON the GPS triggers (see instructions here).  Then you will go to wherever your point is located with the app open.  When you are within 250 feet (50 meters) the stop for that specific GPS point will open and audio (if attached to the stop) will automatically play.  Yes, it’s that cool.


Adding/Creating Audio

Want to make an unforgettable experience for your users?  It’s all about the audio.  We have found that apps with audio get higher download numbers and much higher useage per session.  If your app is an audio tour, creating a script and high quality audio will make a dramatic difference.  Do you have to create a script?  No.  But we suggest you do.  

A script is different than information because it is meant to be read by a voice over artist or someone with a dramatic delivery that fits the tone of your tour.  This can be someone in your community who can help you create the script and audio or a professional.  Here are some tips from one of our voice over experts, Caroline Figiel on creating an audio tour.

However you decide to create your audio tour, the audio will need to be in mp3 format.



Clickable Content

Giving users a great story creates a great experience for them on location.  Want even more engagement?  Want to advertise certain places or events at specific stops?  Copy/paste a URL or phone number into each stop.  This can give users more resources on topics they are interested in, or contact businesses on your tour.  Providing information all in one stop helps the user understand the options and information available to them.



Adding a Custom Map

Upload a PDF or image file of your printed map.  Turn ‘ON’ the map markers to show users where each stop in on the custom map.  After you turn ‘ON’ the map markers, you will see a red box.  Move the red box on top of the stop for the selected stop.  



Adding Video

Add links from Youtube or Vimeo to each stop.  You can just copy/paste the link for your video into the box titled ‘Video URL.’  Videos are great to give users a deeper understanding of your location or its history.


In-App Useage Reports give valuable insights

Providing an app to visitors is a wonderful tool for engagement.  Having insight into how your visitors use the app is essential.  That is why we have added in-app reports to our App Builder Website.  The reports show where users are clicking, how long they are spending in specific stops and if users are new or repeat users.


While Tour Buddy Clients were already receiving weekly reports from App Figures that show overall downloads, now clients get a clear picture of how their app is being used.  Interested in our app analytics and reports?  Read more here.


How to Use App Reports

See number of downloads and how visitors are using the app


Now that your app is live, you will have access to two different types of reports.  App Figures reports and User Reports on the App Builder Website give you insight into your apps’ download numbers as well as how the app is being used.  Below is a detailed explanation for both types of reports.

App Figures Reports

Within a week of both your iOS and Android app of being published, you will receive weekly e-mails from a third party service called App Figures.  App Figures Reports pulls directly from the Tour Buddy developer account.  Inside the e-mail it will provide a download count for that week.  You can click on “Full Report” and see the following information:

  • Total number of downloads
  • Filter by device type (iOS or Android)
  • Filter by date
  • Show download numbers from specific countries
  • Revenue earned (if app is paid)

App Useage Reports

Reports on the App Builder Website give you analytics of user behavior inside the app.  These analytics show which stops are the most popular and how long users are spending in each stop.  Filters for the date give insights into usage throughout the year.


Single Guide Reports

Below is a screenshot and an explanation of reports for a SINGLE guide app:

Single Guide App reports example

Week/Month Filter Button

Use this filter to quickly show the usage in the app for the week/month.  Once you choose the week/month view, then you can filter the dates for the week or month with the date filter above the ‘App Info’ Section.  All of the data you then view will be filtered by the dates you selected.

Total Stop Views

This is how many times the stop has been viewed, which means the user clicked on the stop.  If the same user clicks on the same stop, leave it and comes back, this is counted as 2 views even though it is the same person.

Unique Stop Views

This is how many times the stop has been viewed by a single user.  These stop views only show the first time a user has clicked on the stop.  The Unique Stop Views does not count the same user clicking around on the same stops.  That is why it is titled as ‘Unique’ because it only counts the first time a stop is viewed by a user.

Average Time in Stop (Minutes)

This is the average number of minutes users are spending in each stop.


The number of users who have viewed that stop.

Tips: You can press any of these filters to view the list from highest to lowest.  For example, if you want to see which stop users are spending the most time in, you would press the ‘Average Time in Stop’ to see the highest to the lowest.

Multi-Guide Reports

Below is a screenshot and an explanation of reports for a MULTI-guide app:

App Info

Guide Name

The main guide is the first guide on the list.  This is the guide that ALL of your users will download.  The list of guides below the first guide are all the attached guides.

Guide Downloads

Number of downloads for the specific guide.  (The overall guide downloads do not display for the main guide, only the child guides).

Total Guide Sessions

Number of sessions the user spent in the guide.  If they are in the guide, close out and come back to the guide, this counts as 2 sessions.

Average Time in Guide (minutes)

The average number of minutes that all the users spent in the attached guide.


Number of users who downloaded AND opened that specific guide.


Art and City Tour, Cathedral City, California

The Cathedral City Arts Commission (CCPAC) created the Cathedral City: Where Art LIVES! App for iOS and Android using the App Builder Website. They created several tours of Cathedral City and included sponsors and local artists. Their app has branding for their organization and they are able to communicate with all of their users immediately simply by updating their information on the App Builder Website.

Why an app?

The Cathedral City Arts Commission (CCPAC) has worked tirelessly over the past year to fulfill their vision of creating an app that would bring together their community in celebration of Cathedral City’s unique structures and public art collection.

What’s in the app?

Users can explore Cathedral City with the GPS enabled downtown walking tour and driving tour that give an in depth look at some of the most intriguing structures, statues and pieces of art in the area.  A detailed list of art galleries, local artists and historic sites show just how diverse yet cohesive the community is in its commitment to honoring art and those who create it.  The local parks and city events are also showcased to inform users about events and local gatherings.  Users can scroll through the countless images of beautiful art and landmarks, take a walking or driving tour or learn more about Cathedral City’s history in this exciting new app.


Download Cathedral City: Where Art Lives on the App StoreAvailable_on_the_App_Store_Badge_US-UK_135x40

Download Cathedral City: Where Art Lives on Google Play googleplaybadge


How to improve visitors' experience with a mobile app tour

5 Ways to Improve Visitors’ Experience with a Mobile App Tour

Do you have an amazing downtown historical area in your city that just screams mobile app tour? Does your museum need to enter the modern media age and engage more visitors on their devices? Here are some tips to making an AWESOME mobile app tour!


  1. Quality content.  As much as technology offers bright shiny things, it all goes back to great content that gives users an insider look into your points of interest.  Unique stories, rare photographs and identifying hidden or lesser known points of interest will get people engaged and talking about your tour.

  2. Tell a story.  Facts are bound to be part of your museum or city tour, but can you tell a story of your location that gives a comprehensive look and new understanding of your points of interest in a historical or cultural context?  Think about building a background for visitors and walking them through a narrative with highs, lows, conflict, love and triumph.  Who are the players and what was the story?  Your story can win the hearts and attention of your visitors to make a memory and build a relationship with your brand.

  3. Reach every visitor – What is your demographic of users?  Are they locals, tourists or both?  Are they native speakers of another language?  Are they experienced smartphone users that understand how the App Store and Google Play work or will they need very specific instructions on how to download your app?  Thinking about your users ahead of launching the app will make it easier to reach them and keep them so that they quickly and easily download your tour and enjoy their tour.

  4. Determining how users will navigate your tour – Will your app have a map of the points of interest?  If so, how will that map work?  Is it like a Google Maps app or a cartoon or graphic like map?  Will the stops be numbered with a recommended start and stop or just a list of points of interest?  For museums, numbering your stops to corresponding numbers in your museum is a great way to set up your tour.  Luckily, the Tour Buddy App has both a big picture GPS map that shows the user’s location as well as the ability to upload a custom map.

  5. Creating attractive graphics – The icon for your app is the first impression that users see when they search for your app on the App Store and Google Play.  A clean and relevant icon will help communicate what your brand is all about to them instantaneously.  For home icons, it is best to use large clean graphics and few words because the icon will be shrunk down to 57 pixels X 57 pixels (a super small box) on your phone’s dashboard.  

5 steps to creating an amazing audio tour by Caroline Figiel from Creative Digital Productions

Tour Buddy Apps and Caroline Figiel from Creative Digital Productions have worked on several large projects together over the past 4 years.  Caroline’s expertise in telling a story along with the Tour Buddy App technology has provided outstanding audio tour experiences for the City of Atlanta, Stone Mountain Park and more.  Read Caroline’s steps to creating an audio tour. 


It’s no secret, my partner Danny and I love our job!  Who wouldn’t? We help venues discover stories that have the potential to make people laugh, cry and think.  No matter the size or the budget, all of our clients have something that makes them unique. It just needs to be told correctly and not as an afterthought.  This post is to help you avoid common mistakes and understand how your message can become “edu-taining” storytelling.

So what is “edu-tainment”?  It’s the special sauce that changes boring Wikipedia information into inspirational interpretation.  Is anyone ever entertained by listening to a school report? Audio storytelling might seem easy, but the process is more than matching a noun with a verb.


Step 1: Brainstorming

It begins with brainstorming.
What is your visitor take away?
Who is your audience?
What is their learning style?


Step 2: Familiarization

Take what seems like a pile of rocks and polish them into a gem of a story. Something that you take for granted is new and amazing to others.


Step 3: Scripts

Scripts created for the ears are different from those written for the eyes.  Remember not only are the words important, but so is the style.  The info gained during the brainstorming stage helps decide how to tell the story:

  • through interviews framed by narration?
  • solely narrated?
  • or would a character voice tell the story better?

Step 4: The Storyteller

The storyteller is a very important element to the success of your interpretation.  They are key to  your story’s impact.  Are they just a good reader, or does their delivery put the listener into the action or transport them to another place and time?


Step 5: Production

Production needs to enhance a story not overwhelm it.  It can take on a variety of styles -from the bare minimum to bells and whistles.



Know when to ask for help. Implementation and content are equally important.  When information is artistically transformed into interesting interpretation, that story will “edu-tain” guests on site and keep them posting about it online later.


Hear a sample of Creative Digital’s work:

Want to get in contact with Caroline to learn more about Creative Digital’s services?  

Contact Creative Digital


Admin Activity Center for multiple users

We now offer organizations with multiple users a admin activity center.

As more organizations create mobile app tours for their destinations, Tour Buddy wanted to make it easier for organizations to manage their apps.  This enterprise level feature allows admin users to manage multiple users and apps.  The admin user can oversee content input and changes for multiple apps with multiple users.  Several users are now able to create and manage content in one place.

Not only have we added an admin user, but groups can even brand the whole sign-in experience with their color, logo and unique URL.  This cohesive experience gives organizations greater transparency for managing content, updating branding and viewing reports.  A branded experience with the admin activity center is a unique and valuable feature for organizations large and small.

Contact us to learn more about becoming an Enterprise Client.

Cultural Roadmapp App

Driving Tour of Ireland’s Coastal Highway

Cultural Roadmapp was on a mission to transform the traditional road trip and they envisioned a hands free mobile app tour that helps visitors hear and see the best of their destination.  Using the Tour Buddy App Builder platform and the Gimbal geo-fence technology, Cultural Roadmapp created an engaging, fun, lively and altogether wonderful experience showing 10 different towns in County Clare Ireland.  Read about their award winning app, honored with Silver for Best Use of Mobile in the 2018 Ireland Digital Media Awards.  Download the Cultural Roadmapp App for $9.99 on iOS and Android.


The App

You can now explore one of the world’s richest cultural landscapes as you drive the spectacular 1500-mile coastal route with this hands-free, GPS-enabled audio tour app.  There are the spectacular Cliffs of Moher which stretch for five miles and reach over 700 feet at their highest point. There’s Lisdoonvarna: It’s annual Matchmaking Festival is a mecca for hopefuls around the world. Come with expectations for expert commentary, leading historians and folklorists, local musicians, and captivating storytellers.  Tourbuddy has used the latest technology to make it possible for you to keep your hands on the wheel and eyes on the view as you listen. You can learn more in this video:

About Cultural Roadmapp

This transatlantic startup based in County Clare, Ireland is on a mission to transform the classic road trip. This App is the first of a four-part audio tour series designed specifically for motorists. Deborah Schull is an award-winning writer and producer and also the founder and CEO of Cultural Roadmapp.  She had long wanted to do something to showcase Ireland. “My first idea was a guidebook and then I thought a TV show might be better,” she says. “Then I came up with the idea of a travel app and when the Wild Atlantic Way opened in 2014, I realized it should not just be a regular app. It needed to be an audio tour.” However, it wasn’t until technology became hands free and triggered by GPS that Deborah’s idea fully took shape. “That allowed us to create a fully immersive app experience,” she says. “Because you can use the app without using your hands and because it’s linked by GPS to where you are, you can look at the world around you while you learn more about it. It’s like having locals along with you in the car.”
Watch the Cultural Roadmapp Promo here:

ADA Accessible Museum Tour App

The last ten years of smart phone technology has presented so many new opportunities to make destinations even more accessible than ever before.  The Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary’s Shipwreck Museum in Alpena, Michigan has made its museum and boat tour accessible to guests who are visually impaired through on site displays and a museum tour app that can be continually updated.  Learn how the Shipwreck Alley App was created and how it is helping the museum meet accessibility guidelines.  

The App

The National Marine Sanctuary in Alpena, Michigan recently created a museum tour app.  The mobile app tour would allow guests to take a self guided tour.   The Shipwreck Alley App offers guests a self-guided tour of the Shipwreck museum as well as a GPS triggered outdoor tour on their glass bottom boat.  The vision for creating an app grew out of the desire to make their museum and boat tour accessible for people who are visually impaired.

Accessibility Features

The goal was to make the museum and boat tour a self-guided and independent experience for all guests.   After much research, the Marine Sanctuary liked the Tour Buddy App because they input their own content into the easy to use App Builder and they could integrate the app with ibeacons.

The ibeacons would make it possible for guests to be notified when they are in a particular section of the museum and hear audio about that section.  In addition to the ibeacon integration, the iOS Tour Buddy App is also optimized for accessibility.   Users can turn on the voice over mode (this feature only available in the iOS version of Shipwreck Alley) and listen to the app’s content being read, a key feature in iOS devices for users who are visually impaired.

Now, all guests can enjoy an interactive and self-guided tour of the Shipwreck museum.

Civil War Walking Tour, Alexandria, Virginia

The Boy Scout Troop 1865 developed the Alexandria War of 1812 App using the App Builder Website.  This Eagle Scout project utilized the skills and values taught in the Boy Scouts to produce an interactive app that the entire community could experience.

Explore 10 blocks of Alexandria, VA highlighting sites connected to the War of 1812 and the British occupation of the city in August of 1814.  The app includes photos, audio and extra stops only available through the app.  The Boy Scout Troop 1865 worked as individuals and as a team to create the app in order to help celebrate the anniversary of the War of 1812.


Walking Tours, Sacramento, California

Sacramento Heritage, Inc. one of Sacramento, CA’s most beloved non-profits, has been offering walking tours for years to inform residents and build a sense of heritage and community.  In order to reach even more people, Sacramento Heritage, Inc. decided to create a GPS enabled mobile app tour using the App Builder Website.  Now, even more residents, visitors and history lovers can learn about Sacramento’s vibrant neighborhoods and culture through the Sacramento Heritage, Inc. App.  

Sacramento Heritage, Inc. has been promoting historic preservation since 1975, and one of their key components to educating is through walking tours of the various neighborhoods in Sacramento. Their current app uses different categories/lists for their different tours including Capitol Area Walking Tour, J & K Street Corridor Walking Tour and City Hall Area Walking Tour.  Sacramento Magazine writer Jordan Venema’s article titled “All Summer Long” describes why the app is great for users who are looking to explore the city on their own time instead attending a scheduled tour with a tour guide.  

Because Sacramento Heritage, Inc. is a dynamic organization that is always growing, they are going to add another tour to their app within the next year.  With the App Builder Platform, they are able to add or delete stops and categories easily and independently.  The article here discusses their plans to add a new tour.  With so much to explore in Sacramento, there may be even more tours to come in the future.


Art Tour, Atlanta, Georgia

Experience remarkable artwork by local, nationally and internationally recognized artists, with our easy to navigate app created by Creative Digital Productions. This digital guide will lead you through downtown Atlanta corridors and touch on historical sites and monuments that speak to the heart of Atlanta’s character. Our digital app is a great way to learn about Atlanta’s place in history through our cultural and artistic heritage.


Walking Tour, Ardmore, Oklahoma

The City of Ardmore’s Historic Preservation Commission has been working hard since 1983 to preserve the City of Ardmore, Oklahoma’s buildings and history.  Through various organizations and grants, the city was able to not only create a comprehensive website about historic Ardmore, but also a location based GPS enabled app that allows people to explore each landmark and building to hear the story of the City of Ardmore.  

The App

Learn about the history and legends of historic downtown Ardmore, Oklahoma with this self-guided walking tour.  The app includes more than 20 stops that show a historic landmark/building.  Each stop has at least one image that tells the story of what the location looked like at a point in history and how it relates to what it looks like today.   Each location has a clickable GPS pin that the user can get walking/driving directions to.  The user can play the audio to hear high quality narration of the history and interesting untold stories only found in the app.  Stroll past the historic architecture, learn about little known historic events and explore the sites where famous and infamous people once lived and played.

Learn more about how the App Builder Platform works to start building your walking tour today.

Foreign Language Tour, St. Augustine, Florida

The Red Train Tour trolley in St. Augustine, FL  wanted to provide foreign language guests with an equally amazing experience on their trolley tour, so they created 2 foreign language apps using the App Builder Website.  

The Red Train Tour is the best way to experience the beautiful and picturesque city of St. Augustine, FL.  Because the trolley is such a popular way to get around and learn about the city, the team at Red Train Tour created an app with the Tour Buddy App Builder Platform for both French and Spanish speakers so that their foreign language guests can experience the tour in their language.


After visitors pay for their trolley ticket, they receive instructions on how to download the French or Spanish App with using a specific download code.  Once downloaded with the settings adjusted, the foreign language visitor will hear the audio files as they trigger riding on the trolley tour.  The visitors get a tailored experience and the Red Train Tour can control who downloads the tour with the privacy of the download code.


Celebrate Bluffton

Historical Tour, Bluffton, South Carolina

Bluffton Buddy is a self-paced audio tour of historic Bluffton, SC. With Bluffton Buddy as your guide, you will discover the people, places and traditions that give Bluffton its unique culture, and its fascinating heritage, as an antebellum Lowcountry summer planter’s colony. Step back in time with Bluffton Buddy to explore, and experience, the history of this charming Southern town as you journey along Bluffton’s Heritage Trail.

Bluffton Buddy will take you to historic churches and historic homes. It will bring you to a famous Civil War naval battle and share insight into life on a plantation. You’ll learn about the Gullah people of the Sea Islands, their religious and community traditions, and the success of a freedman working to build a future for his family during Reconstruction. Along the way, you will hear about the Bluffton Movement where the the seeds of secession were planted many years before the Civil War began with the shelling of Ft. Sumter. And you’ll discover that Bluffton was the winter home for one of America’s richest families as well as the center of the country’s short-lived oyster packing industry.

Bluffton Buddy has 13 stops that take you through centuries of history. The tour is GPS enabled to direct you to every location. You can go at your own speed; start anywhere anytime; finish anywhere anytime. Take the entire tour (about three hours) or just visit the locations that interest you most.


Foreign Language Tours, Savannah, Georgia

Visit Savannah, Savannah’s business unit of the Chamber of Commerce, wanted to create foreign language tours for international visitors so that they could learn about and experience the wealth of history and stories that Savannah is known for.  Their 7 free foreign language tours were created using the App Builder Platform and they are available through the Savannah Experiences App on iOS and Android.  

What’s in the App?

Users can choose their own route, or follow the recommended tour route that leads them through Savannah’s beautiful historic district, in and around famous landmarks, museums, and shopping and dining options. Users can choose from seven languages including Spanish, French, German, Portuguese, Italian, Chinese and Japanese.  Navigate the content through the detailed stop menu or tour map which links to a GPS tour map. The tour works offline, too, so users don’t have to worry about needing a network or wi-fi connection.

Local Impact

While the city of Savannah has such a diverse selection of tours to choose from, the foreign language tours in the Savannah Experiences App are set apart from all the others because they are GPS enabled tours in international guests’ native language.  Fox 28 in Savannah aired a story about this new exciting app and how it is tapping into a stronger engagement with international guests:

Civil Rights Tour, Little Rock, Arkansas

Little Rock, Arkansas played an important role in the Civil Rights movement that helped set the stage for a major national movement.  The Department of Arkansas Heritage along with several other organizations and institutions funded a grant to create the Arkansas Civil Rights History Mobile App.  Using the App Builder Platform, the Department of Arkansas Heritage was able to create a comprehensive tour of more than 30 locations, all available in English and Spanish.


This narrative tour guide will takes you through numerous sites in Little Rock that have played significant roles in the city’s civil rights history, covering both the more familiar and the less well-known people, places and events.  Multimedia and links to further resources will help you to delve even deeper into this history throughout and after your journey. This project is supported in part by a grant from the Arkansas Humanities Council and the Department of Arkansas Heritage.

Multi-Guide, Edisto, South Carolina

Explore Edisto is a media outlet dedicated to the exploration, history, ecology and cultural diversity of our island. The Explore Edisto App is a Multi-Guide App that features multiple tours throughout various locations on the island and beach. Use our guide to find out about local restaurants, activities and shopping. These self-guided tours take you along a beautiful drive or walk and back through time as you travel across Edisto Island.

Put the app into GPS-Auto play mode so that the audio plays automatically as you drive by the points of interest and ‘Kiosk Mode’ so that the app does not go into ‘power save’ mode and turn off while you are driving. These can be found in ‘settings’.


In certain heavily wooded areas throughout Botany Bay, it is possible that the GPS-Auto-play may not work. Should this occur, simply manually press the play button to continue listening to the audio of the tour.


City Guides, Savannah, Georgia


As Savannah’s local mobile app company, Tour Buddy Apps wanted to give the over 7 million tourists who visit Savannah every year an easy way to find and download the best guides to history, attractions and events in the area.  Savannah Experiences available on iOS and Android includes over 10 guides for download and was created using the App Builder Platform.  

What’s in the App?

Savannah’s amazing attractions range from beautiful historic parks and picturesque beaches to delicious local food and kid friendly museums. The Savannah Experiences App is a Multi-Guide App that lets users download guides for a wide range of experiences all in one place.  Tourists and locals alike can check out the local event app like First Friday Art March or download the Bonaventure Cemetery Tour and learn about the cemetery’s famous inhabitants.

Partnering with Visit Savannah

Tour Buddy Apps has partnered with Visit Savannah, the visitor bureau of the Savannah Area Chamber of Commerce to offer our Savannah Audio Walking Tour in 7 free Foreign Language Tours.  All audio and tour content is available offline in separate apps for the following languages: Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Chinese and Japanese.

Apps available for download in Savannah Experiences:

Bonaventure Cemetery Tour LITE: Free
Der Savannah Stadtrundgang: Free
First Friday Art March: Free
Geekend: Free
Passeio de Savannah: Free
Paseo de Savannah: Free
The Scout Guide: Free
Savannah for Kids: Free
Savannah Walking Tour: $8.99
Savannah Walking Tour LITE: Free
Starland District: Free
Stopover Music Festival: Free
Tour di Savannah: Free
サバナウォーキングツア: Free
萨凡纳徒步游: Free

Heritage Farm Tour, North Georgia

The Byron Herbert Reece Farm and Heritage Center gives visitors an inside look at how nature and farming inspired a North Georgia mountain man to write great poetry and novels.  With the self-guided app, visitors can roam the farm while listening to the history about the Reece Family, Native American and Early Settler history and info on local towns.  Instead of relying solely on docents or tour guides to take visitors around, the Farm and Heritage Center uses the app to not only let visitors explore at their own pace but also as a virtual tour for potential visitors who want to learn more about this dynamic poet and his farm in the North Georgia Mountains.  The app also gives visitors information on local businesses and events to share all the exciting activities for visitors to the area.


Walking and Driving Tour, Henderson, Minnesota

Several historic foundations and local societies in Henderson, Minnesota provided funding and research to create the Discover Henderson App using the App Builder Website.  They wanted an easy way to create several different tours of Henderson in order to preserve the history and stories of their town.  

What’s in the App?

The Discover Henderson App invites users to experience one of Minnesota’s most historic towns nestled in the Minnesota River Valley.  Major highlights in the Discover Henderson App include a tour of Sibley County Historic Museum, Henderson’s Historic Main Street, and a GPS guided historic walking tour. Users can listen to audio clips that elaborate on the various GPS triggered stops, or scroll through the various town celebrations such as the Classic Car Roll In or Sauerkraut Days. The Discover Henderson App relates the rich history and traditions of the town and people of Henderson, Minnesota.  The Discover Henderson App is available for iPhones, iPads and Android devices on the Apple App Store and Google Play.

Download Discover Henderson on the App StoreAvailable_on_the_App_Store_Badge_US-UK_135x40

Download Discover Henderson on Google Play googleplaybadge

Campus Tour, Brisbane, Australia

The UQ Walking Tour App gives users a tour of the St. Lucia Campus at University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia.  The University knows how important it is for potential and new students to find their way around campus as well and communicating the values, history and story behind the beautiful sandstone campus of St. Lucia.  The UQ App fills this need by offering a self guided tour of the campus with audio, images and specific walking directions around the campus to actual visitors to the campus as well as interested students and parents who want to check on the campus virtually on their smartphone or tablet.

The UQ Walking Tour app is available for no charge on the App Store and Google Play.

City Tour, Gibbon, Minnesota

The City of Gibbon, MN App is a convenient way for visitors and residents alike to find information about the city’s landmarks, businesses and organizations.  The city has used this app as a marketing and communication tool to gain momentum for local events and attractions as well as for businesses to have a ‘stop’ on the app to show their phone number, website and any other important information.

Campus App Tour, Melbourne, Australia

The Billibellarys Walk App is a campus app tour created by the University of Melbourne as a self-guided narrative, from an Aboriginal perspective in order to educate the University’s community about the rich history on its grounds.  The app was created using the App Builder Website and makes all of Wurundjeri people’s rich history easily accessible and serves as a tour guide, lecture and story all in one place.  


Take a walk through Billibellary’s Country using Billibellary’s Walk App for your iPhone or iPad. This campus app tour allows users to experience Melbourne’s six seasons as they are subtly reconstructed as the context for understanding place and belonging for the Wurundjeri people. This app exposes users to the cultural interpretation of the land that the Wurundjeri people have inhabited for 40,000 years. Lying within the University of Melbourne’s built environment are the whispers and songs of the Wurundjeri people and their protection of important resources crucial to everyday life. This GPS enabled tour will help users feel, know and imagine the rich history of the Wurundjeri people and the land that they are so closely tied to.



Campus Tour, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

The app is a tour of the campus of City of Asylum, a Pittsburgh, PA.  The City of Asylum nonprofit provides sanctuary to endangered writers and serves the community with literary and arts-based programs. The City of Asylum App is a five-chapter audio tour includes commentary by Salman Rushdie, Wole Soyinka, Thaddeus Mosley, Oliver Lake, and City of Asylum co-founders Henry Reese and Diane Samuels.

Wine Trail, North Georgia

This Unicoi Wine Trail App provides detailed information on all Unicoi Wine Trail wineries, tasting rooms and events throughout the year. It also includes high resolution pictures, a detailed map of winery locations, google maps, links to each wineries’ website and an informative Unicoi Wine Trail video.

The Unicoi Wine Trail is nestled in the scenic Blue Ridge Mountains 80 miles north of Atlanta, Ga and is home to 6 of North Georgia’s premier wineries. The Vineyards & Tasting Rooms are located only miles apart, making it easy to enjoy all local wines without a long drive in-between. With vast acres of estate vineyards, award-winning wines; White County’s Unicoi Wine trail is the epic center for nearly 30 tasting rooms spread across North Georgia.


Shields Ethridge Heritage Farm, North Georgia

The Shields Ethridge Heritage Farm App allows users to explore the Shields-Ethridge Heritage Farm at their own pace on site or as a virtual tour on their device.    The farm is an outdoor agricultural museum that functions as an educational and interpretive center in northeast Georgia. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and it is unique for its collection of over 20 intact historic buildings in their original location.

The tour experience shares some of the rich farming history of Northeast Georgia and users can choose their own route or follow the recommended tour route that leads them through the farm core and to nearby farm buildings.

The mission of the Shields-Ethridge Heritage Farm is to provide and operate an educational and interpretive outdoor museum that uses historic preservation and the natural environment to increase an awareness and understanding of Georgia’s agricultural history.


Cemetery Tour, Grant County, Indiana

The Estates of Serenity App explores the historic Estates of Serenity in Grant County, Indiana with this GPS enabled audio tour.  Buried in this picturesque cemetery are the adventurous vagabonds, war heroes and mighty industrialists that built Marion, Indiana. Users can view a map of the Estates of Serenity, find grave sites through GPS, and listen to professional audio recordings about historic figures buried in the cemetery. This self-guided app gives visitors and interested users the opportunity to see, hear and experience the Estates of Serenity at their own pace.

Big Cat Sanctuary Spanish Language App

Big Cat Sanctuary, Tampa, Florida

Big Cat Rescue, a sanctuary for big cats, wanted to communicate their mission of rescuing abused and abandoned big cats through a virtual tour app, not only in English, but also in Spanish so that they could reach even more hearts and minds.  Carole Baskin, CEO of Big Cat Rescue created the Big Cat Rescue App as well as the Spanish version, Grandes Felinos al Rescate using the App Builder Website.  Read about how this non-profit organization is spreading the word and awareness about its important mission through their app.


Interview with Big Cat Rescue

We caught up with Big Cat Rescue’s #1 cat lover and CEO Carole Baskin about her experience using our tourApp Builder Platform.  The app offers a tour of the Big Cat Rescue Sanctuary complete with photos and audio for over 100 Cats along with a GPS based and Campus map.  The app is updated as new cats are brought in to the sanctuary.  The app is available for iPhone and Android.

Tour Buddy: What made you decide to build an app for your organization?

Baskin: We had an app designed for us by a donor, but we didn’t have the ability to keep it current and didn’t want to keep asking him to update it, so the Tour Buddy app was a great way to get what we wanted, without bothering anyone else.

Tour Buddy: How long did it take to create the content and create the app using the Tour Buddy app builder website?

Baskin: It took me two days to build our tour, and that included 105 exotic cats (or stops, as would be the lingo on most tours). There was a photo of each cat, a written bio and an audio bio recording for each cat. We also plotted each cat out on a map in the app. I think it could have been done in a day, if I had all of the files ready ahead of time.

Tour Buddy: What is some of the feedback you have received from the app users?

Baskin: Big Cat Rescue app users love being able to see the cats and hear their stories. It is also a great training tool for our tour guides to learn the cats’ stories and facts about all of the cats at the sanctuary.

Tour Buddy: What is the best part about your app?

Baskin: My favorite thing about Tour Buddy is the ability to update it any time and that it is available in both the App Store and the Google Play Store.

Tour Buddy: What did you like about working with Tour Buddy to create your app?

Baskin: The interface was so user friendly that I didn’t need to schedule training and that means a lot to me since time is what I have the least of.

Tour Buddy: What advice would you give to other organizations that are looking to create an app?

Baskin: The Tour Buddy app is IT. No one knows your site like you do, so take the time to put it all in an app and you will benefit from the effort.

Tour Buddy: How often do you make updates to the app content?

Baskin: We update the content less than once a month and expect that we will maintain this same schedule.

Tour Buddy: What impact has your app had on your organization?

Baskin: The Tour Buddy app has enabled me to make sure that every tour guide gets the exact, “purrfect” story on each cat. In the past, our tour guides trained tour guides and, like the old game of telephone, the message gets changed the more it is handed down. We use a written guide, but people still repeat what they hear more than what they read. By having our audio stories all contained in the Big Cat Rescue app, every guide is hearing the accurate and relevant stories of the 105 exotic cats at the sanctuary.

More Big Cat Rescue Information

Find Big Cat Rescue on YouTube at (More than 63,000,000 views) or on

Facebook (More than 95,000 Big Cat Rescue fans).

Tour Buddy helps its clients reach new audiences.  Create an app, update it on the fly, and build your own tour in less than a week (Baskin finished theirs in TWO DAYS!).  If you are interested in creating your own mobile app, or you have a question about our tour app builder, please feel free to sign up for your 14 day free trial! You can also check out our FAQ page for more information.


GPS Triggered Audio App Tour

GPS Triggered Trolley Tour App

International guests experience the Old Town Trolley Tour in Washington D.C. throughout the year. As a result, Old Town Trolley Tours wanted a GPS triggered audio app tour to provide a tour in guests’ native language.  The app tour tells the story of Washington D.C. stop by stop.  Read about how Old Town Trolley used the App Builder Website to create their GPS triggered foreign language audio tour. 

About the GPS Triggered Audio App Tour

Old Town Trolley Tours is one of the most well-known and highly rated trolley tour companies in the United States. As leaders in tourism, they have created a GPS triggered audio app tour for foreign language guests.  They envisioned a user friendly and practical app that would tell visitors in their native language about what they were seeing.   This stop by stop narration gives visitors a personal tour at their fingertips.

After purchasing a ticket, guests are given sign in access to their tour.  The app is accessed through the Old Town Trolley Tours App on the App Store and Google Play.  Guests will experience the following:

  • A choice of 7 languages including: French, Spanish, Italian, German, Portuguese, Chinese (Mandarin) and Japanese.
  • GPS triggered audio for every point of interest.
  • GPS enabled map with clickable pins.
  • App shows all of the stops with the option to get directions from their current location.
  • Slideshow of images that rotate as guests listen to audio.
  • Once downloaded, app  works offline.


More than ever, Old Town Trolley Tours knows they are providing a relaxing and meaningful experience for every guest.  With their app, Old Town Trolley can make any changes to their tour in real time.  The App Builder offers the ability to update stops or content automatically.  It’s just that easy.

Contact us to learn how to get started using the App Builder Website for your tour, click here.

hospital app tour

Hospital App Tour with Video

Dayton Children’s Hospital in Dayton, Ohio wanted to showcase additions to their facility.   They created a hospital app tour with video that gives visitors a virtual tour of their state of the art facility.  The hospital used the App Builder Website to create their tour with branding, images, audio and video for the App Store and Google Play.  

The Hospital App Tour

The Dayton Children’s Hospital App shows how beautiful, inviting and warm a children’s hospital can be.  After viewing the app, users see how the facility has been growing.  The  app gives a VIP tour of all the different areas of the hospital that are helping to reach every child who visits.    However, the hospital doesn’t just include a registration desk, rehabilitation area and pharmacy, but it also shows a fun photo booth, a lighted staircase, and a ball maze!


Now, users can see and hear how Dayton Children’s Hospital works for children and families.  Users can even check-in at Urgent Care through a link in the app.  The Dayton Children’s Hospital App provides a comprehensive tour of the hospital.  The app invites users to connect with the hospital to discover why Dayton Children’s Hospital is just right for your child.


Want to learn more about how the App Builder works?  Watch this video.


UQ Walking Tour App

Tour of Campus Landmarks

The University of Queensland St. Lucia Campus in Brisbane, Australia has unique and symbolic carvings etched throughout their campus’ buildings.  While the Saint Lucia Campus already has an app tour of their campus, UQ Walking Tours, they wanted to show the beauty and importance of these carvings in a walking tour app to share with their community and the world.  The UQ Carvings App was created using the App Builder Website and depicts more than 1,000 carvings located throughout the scenic campus.

The App

The UQ Carvings App for iOS and Android gives users an inttimate look into the beautiful carvings featured throughout The Great Court area of the University.  The Great Court was designed to be a modern take on the European quadrangles of monasteries and universities. This video describes the significance of the Great Court Carvings:



The UQ Carvings App tour is organized by building and shows the various areas with carvings along with a caption.  Users can get walking directions to each building and encounter the rich carvings first hand.  Now visitors can not only see each carving in the UQ Carvings App, but they can locate them on campus and better understand the significance of each carving.  Download the UQ Carvings to experience this beautiful space.


Self-Guided Tour of Ebenezer Creek

Explore Ebenezer Creek is an iOS and Android GPS triggered mobile app tour of the Springfield Ebenezer Greenway in Springfield, Georgia.  Ebenezer Creek holds so much beauty and history that the City of Springfield wanted to create a self-guided tour that invites visitors and locals alike to learn more about the Creek at their own pace using their own devices.  10 points of interest are included in the app and each one provides a deeper look at the nature or history of the wildlife, plants and stories told about the Creek.  From the first settlers who arrived from Salzburg, Austria in Savannah to an intriguing look at the Tickseed Sunflower, the Explore Ebenezer Creek App tells the story of the Creek.  The City of Springfield created the app using the App Builder Website and the app includes audio, video, original content, GPS triggers and a clickable GPS map.  For the launch of the Explore Ebenezer Creek App, the Georgia Conservancy, City of Springfield and Backwater Expeditions went on a group paddle down the river to experience the river and learn about its beauty and history with their devices.  Read more about the launch event here.

Now, the City of Springfield can provide a historical and nature focused self-guided kayaking tour on their beautiful Creek any time of the year!

Meridian Historic Walking Tour App

Historic Walking Tour of Downtown

The city of Meridian, Idaho wanted to showcase their long and rich history with a walking tour. The city wanted to share local stories and inform their community and visitors about the cultural gems that lie around town. Informational videos, starring a Meridian historian, provide further details as the tour progresses. The app features numerous sites that hold untold treasures!

Building the App

Evarts with the Meridian Historical Preservation Commission worked with local high schooler Nic Herman to develop a digital walking tour with an app called TourBuddy.

So far, there are 22 destination stops in downtown Meridian that will be programmed into the app, Evarts said. The app will use the GPS on your phone or device to let you know how close you are to a destination.

Each stop will have its own profile on the app featuring things like historical background, current information, videos and pictures from the past and present.

The city of Meridian already has a historic walking tour. In fact, every Meridian third-grader takes this tour during the school year. The teachers and students carry books around during the tour with information about the historic sites.

The new app will give teachers, students and other visitors a pool of information and interactive materials, all gathered in one place.

“We’re pretty excited about it,” Evarts said. “It’s kind of a neat way to jump into the digital age with an easy-to-use platform.”

Read the full article about how Meridian’s Walking Tour app is helping to teach 3rd graders about History here>>


The App

The app guides users around the town of Meridian by using GPS markers. Highlights of the tour combine historical buildings with unique stories from local historian, Lila Hill.  Josh Evarts, who worked closely with the Meridian Historical Preservation Commission to create the app describes the App Builder as, “a neat way to jump into the digital age with an easy-to-use platform.”  The Meridian Press has written an article about how the app was created and launched.

The walking tour serves to educate users on significant locations while informing them of past stories that are often overlooked. Although the historic walking tour can be enjoyed by anyone, local Meridian grade-school students will be included in the fun as the city helps supplement students’ education of the area using the tour as an active learning experience. Understanding the intricacies that make this town special will foster respect and pride in the younger generations. This is also true for anyone who partakes in the tour!

Can you spot the art deco roof line on the old high school? Or, do you know what year Meridian celebrated its centennial? 

Learn more about Meridian’s Historic Walking Tour available on the App Store and Google Play.


Push notifications for mobile app tour

Push Notifications and Geo-fencing in your mobile app tour

Incorporating push notifications and geo-fencing into a mobile app can be a powerful location based communication tool.  Both features engage users in real time in a specific area or location.

What are Push Notifications?

Push notifications are alerts or messages sent to the dashboard of an iOS or Android device.  When users download an app, they need to press ‘allow’ to receive the push notifications.  Push notifications can contain a message or  URLs about special events and promotions.  Sending a message to the front of users phones keep their attention in real time.

What is Geo-fencing?

A Geo-fence is a virtual geographic boundary around a location.  It can be as small as 50 meters and as large as an entire city.  The push notifications work with the Geo-Fence so that the users who are in the Geo-fence receive the notifications.

How do Push Notifications and Geo-Fence work in an app?

A hotel could send notifications to only users on the property.  The message could tell guests about happy hour in the lobby or a promotion on golfing.  A city or destination could expand the Geo-fence of the notification to cover the entire city.  You can send specific messages when users enter the geo-fence and exit.  If a destination wants more reviews, they can send a message asking for a review with a link to the review page that is sent when the visitor leaves the geo-fence.

Incorporating Sponsors and Advertisers in Push Notifications

For potential advertisers in cities and destinations, the app could send a notification to users who enter or exit the Geo-fence around a business or merchant.  The message could tell users about a promotion at that business or event happening there later that day.

Possible issues with Push Notifications and Geo-fencing

Both features create an excellent medium of communication between the app creator and the user.  However, both features require that the user opt-in by pressing “Allow” after downloading the app.  Therefore if the users press, “Don’t Allow” they will not receive the push notifications/Geo-fences.

If any of the information communicated through either feature is hyper important, you may want to reconsider sending it through the notifications or Geo-fencing and just make it part of the app content.  Not every user will allow the notifications, but every user who does will certainly see them and be very aware of your message

Push notifications along with Geo-fencing creates an even greater connection between the user and the app to direct attention towards specific events, promotions or businesses.

Contact Tour Buddy Apps about this premium communication feature today.

Gamify your app tour with quiz questions

Quiz feature for tours now available!

The Tour Buddy Apps team has continued to listen to our clients over the past 7 years about what is important to them when offering visitors a self-guided tour app.  Offering a mobile app tour that is not only self-guided but also interactive has come up again and again.  This past summer we added a quiz feature to our app in order to create a fun and interactive element to every tour.


Client Apps with Quiz Questions

The City of Fort Thomas, Kentucky included questions for their app to commemorate the city’s Bicentennial.  Their quiz questions focus on content for each stop.  The Meridian Historic Walking Tour App also includes questions that are incorporated with the walking tour for 4th graders in Meridian, Idaho to learn more about their town in an interactive and fun app.  The city is also getting special edition coins created that will be given to visitors who completely fill out their scorecard.  Not only can the city gamify their tour, but they are able to increase interaction with visitors and locals to create an amazing experience in downtown Meridian.  Taking a self-guided tour with a mobile app can be a wonderful experience.  Now with quiz questions the user gets to test their knowledge and interact with the content on the tour.


Download these apps to experience the new quiz feature and contact us to learn how to create a mobile app tour with the brand new quiz feature.


Want to learn more?


How iBeacons work with a mobile app tour

Create a self-guided mobile tour with iBeacons

iBeacons have become a hot new tool for mobile media and location based intelligence.  iBeacons are an effective tool to trigger content and events in user’s smart phones in indoor areas and smaller spaces where GPS triggers are not as accurate.

Many customers come to us with visions for iBeacon tours to engage their visitors.  While they can enhance the experience for some tours, it is important to understand the benefits and limitations before making the recommendation to use iBeacons.  This technology can certainly enhance a location based app.  Let’s look at several key factors determine if they are the right solution.

What are iBeacons?

iBeacons use Bluetooth technology to communicate with mobile devices in a 5-30 foot radius.  When a visitor walks into that range (and they have a connected app on their device) they will receive a notification.  For a mobile app tour, iBeacons are placed next to points of interest.  When a visitor enters the iBeacon radius, they will receive a notification or information about that point of interest that displays within the app.  It is important to note that when the visitor downloads the app, they must allow Bluetooth and notifications.  This enables their phone to monitor for the iBeacons and allow the notification to come through.

When to use iBeacons

iBeacons should be used to trigger information in tours that would not work with Geo-fences or GPS triggers. Why?  It is always easier to use the device’s GPS hardware to trigger location information – since the hardware comes inside the device and does not require additional maintenance – or Bluetooth technology.  iBeacons will be the best choice in indoor spaces where the GPS signal is weak or if the points of interest are closer than 30 meters together (the minimum range for accurate GPS triggers).  Correctly placed and configured, the iBeacons allow visitors to connect what they are looking at in real time with information and commentary in the app.  The iBeacon is placed next to a point of interest and then when the app comes within the ibeacon radius, the app opens to information about that point of interest.

Limitations of iBeacons

  • Cost of purchasing the iBeacons and maintaining them – such as replacing batteries and general wear and tear.
  • Visitor needs to ‘allow’ Bluetooth to receive the information in the app.  This setting reduces battery life and some people it find invasive.
  • Not all visitors will choose to allow the notification.
  • Not all visitors want external triggered content.  Many visitors prefer to control their own experience and choose which information in the app to view or listen to.   Therefore, it is essential that you can provide an intuitive interface for these visitors to easily find and view information.


When to use GPS Triggers and Geo-fences

Driving tours and walking tours that span a large area work best with GPS triggers or Geo-fencing.  GPS triggers and Geo-fencing function with GPS coordinates and the phone’s location, no iBeacons required.   The radius can be set for both GPS triggers and Geo-fences so that the information will trigger when the visitor enters the radius.  As mentioned, the minimum reliable radius for GPS technology is about 30 meters.

How to set up iBeacons

Tour Buddy has partnered with Gimbal to use their iBeacons and software exclusively.  We have chosen this strategic partnership because Gimbal iBeacons are high quality, long lasting and reliable.   iBeacons run batteries, which die.  The battery of a Gimbal iBeacon lasts up to 18 months but we recommend replacing them every 12-14 months to ensure that they are always working.

When setting up an iBeacon tour we recommend testing every iBeacon and signal to verify that it is well placed and facing the best direction to optimize the triggers.  We also recommend placing them so that the flat part faces the direction of the mobile devices to improve accuracy.


iBeacon radius accuracy

iBeacons are more of an art than a science.  There are several factors that affect the accuracy.

  • Battery life: For some brands of iBeacons, if the battery is strong, the radius will be larger. Then, if the battery is weak, the trigger radius will be smaller.
  • Objects and People:  If the device has a clear path to the iBeacon, the radius will be larger, if the path is blocked by walls, objects and people, the radius will be smaller and it may not trigger at all.

What Next?

It is important to consider your visitors’ experience, evaluate the physical space and your resources for providing and maintaining the tour.  With an experienced mobile app team, you will be able to create the best tour for your visitors.


We would love to discuss the best solution for your location.

Contact us:




Battle of Nashville Driving Tour App

Battle of Nashville Driving Tour App

In early 1862, Nashville became the first Confederate state capitol to fall to Union troops, surrendered without firing a shot.  The Nashville battlefield is huge by Civil War standards, encompassing almost all of south and west Nashville.  City Sites created a self-guided, hands free, GPS triggered app for consumers who want a deeper experience and a way to consume content in a fun and easy manner from their car. The Battle of Nashville Driving Tour app is available on the  App Store and Google Play  for $9.99.


Battle of Nashville Driving Tour App is a comprehensive, hands free, GPS triggered tour of the largest battlefield in a metropolitan city. The self-guided tour is organized into 3 tours that you can take at your own pace:
1. FULL tour with all 50 stops
2. Northern tour which features downtown locations and Union fortresses
3. Southern tour which features homes, forts, battlefields, and more.

Many of the tour stops have GPS triggered audio files making it easy to stay focused on the road and sites to see. Great care was given for content accuracy available from local experts, storytellers and those with great knowledge of events.  Interviews and research was conducted with Nashville’s most prominent historians including Ridley Wills II and John Allyn (president of BONP).  Nashville Mayor Megan Barry also provided feedback about the app “Knowing the history of Nashville is critical to understanding where we came from and determining where we will go in the future.  The City Sites-Nashville app offers residents and visitors alike the opportunity to have a fuller, more comprehensive understanding of the history of Nashville and the people who have helped shape the city today.”

City Sites is looking forward to offering a variety of apps in the near future on Architecture, Music Row, and Winery/Brewery tours, just to name a few.

See more driving tour apps and contact Tour Buddy Apps to learn how you can build a better visitor experience.

Sightseeing Manchester trolley tour

City Trolley Foreign Language App Tour

Sightseeing Manchester launched a year round hop-on-hop-off trolley tour of the iconic city of Manchester, England this year.  They wanted to offer the tour in several foreign languages as well as English.  The Tour Buddy App Builder Platform allowed them to create and launch an app that includes the entire trolley tour in English, French, Spanish, Arabic, German and Chinese.   Learn about how Sightseeing Manchester’s new trolley service and foreign language app tour are engaging locals and tourists in Manchester, England.    


About the Bus Tour

Sightseeing Manchester has carefully planned 23 hop-on hop-off stops, so that visitors can choose how much time to spend at each stop.   Visitors can view this timetable to catch the next bus to the next stop.  Some of Manchester’s key sights included are Town Hall Manchester, National Football Museum, Museum of Science and Industry and Manchester United Football Club.  The English commentary on the bus tour is Dominic Monaghan, actor from Lord of the Rings and Lost.


About the Foreign Language App

Manchester is a hot spot for tourists from all over the world.  Sightseeing Manchester wanted each of their visitors to experience this exceptional tour in their own language.  Tour Buddy had the perfect app platform to make this possible for them.  With features like the GPS enabled map, offline audio, hands free GPS triggers and the ability to make automatic changes to the app, the Sightseeing Manchester App has helped visitors gets the information they want to know on their own language on their own smartphone or tablet. The languages in the app include German, Spanish, French, Arabic, and Chinese.   Download the iOS or Android at the App Store and Google Play.

You don’t want to miss this! Follow link to purchase your bus ticket.

Contact Tour Buddy to learn how you can make a Multi-Language App Tour.

Hotel App for Westin Savannah Harbor

The Westin Savannah Harbor always provides a relaxing resort experience.  This world class experience includes easy access to downtown Savannah.  This hotel app engages users within the resort and throughout the city.  Now, the Westin Savannah Harbor App for iOS devices helps visitors connect with the Westin before, during and after their stay.

Push Notifications

The Westin Savannah Harbor Hotel App puts essential information right at visitors’ fingertips.  The app allows the Westin to communicate with their visitors in real time through Geo-fenced push notifications.  Is it Happy Hour?  The Westin can let guests know through the app.

Resort Guide

The Westin Savannah Harbor App also showcases the amenities, dining options, events & promotions.  The clickable guide has images, explanations and GPS locations.  Users have all the essential hotel information available in one place.  No searching the internet or fumbling with a paper schedule.  

Private Sign-in for Custom Tours

Because the App Builder Platform is incredibly flexible, the Westin is able to offer a hotel app with custom itineraries.  The hotel app provides a private sign-in so that guests can privately access their custom itinerary or tour.  Does the guest like seafood restaurants and childrens’ museums?  The Westin concierge can create a specific tour for the guest(s) that they can download using a sign-in through the app.  As a premium feature, the personal touch of a customized tour for a guest can make a lasting impression.


Visitors and locals alike want a retreat from everyday life and to experience Savannah in a whole new way.  A stay at the Westin Savannah Harbor provides a refreshing vacation with so many opportunities to explore Savannah.

International Language App Featured

Tour Buddy’s CEO Yvonne Jouffrault is featured in this interview discussing the international language tour features of the Savannah Experiences App. Savannah experienced more than 13 million visitors last year, 10 percent of which were international visitors. The app has been available in English for some time, but the additional languages featured support the significant international visitors experience Savannah.

From the video:

Yvonne Jouffrault, founder of TourBuddy Apps, says the app has been around for a while in English, but this is a chance for visitors who struggle to understand Savannah’s history to really understand it.

“There’s not a lot of options for foreign language visitors in Savannah. Mostly they roam around and they look at a map and have that clueless look on their face,” Jouffrault said.


The Savannah Experiences app is a multi-guide app that supports both English and international language tours in cooperation with Visit Savannah. The app users can choose from seven languages including

  • Spanish language tours
  • French language tours
  • German language tours
  • Portuguese language tours
  • Italian language tours
  • Chinese language tours
  • Japanese language tours

 Learn more about how you can use Tour Buddy at your destination to connect with international visitors using foreign language tours & check out how the Savannah Experiences app and Stone Mountain app enhance international visitor experience using foreign language tours.

Gettysburg Driving Tour App

Gettysburg Battlefield GPS Driving Tour



The summer of 2016 has been a hot one along the east coast. One of Pennsylvania’s most visited tourist destinations has been overflowing with tourists and history buffs.  Visitors from all over the world want to learn about the historic battlefields and the Civil War. Now, thanks to InSite Gettysburg, a Gettysburg born and bred everything tech tour company, and Tour Buddy Apps visitors can learn about Gettysburg as they drive along in their car with a driving tour of the Gettysburg Battlefield.

GPS Triggered Audio Tour

A visitor can download the app for $9.99 on the App Store or Google Play.  With the app, you can drive, yes drive, through the battlefields as their app triggers at various points to tell the story of Gettysburg. Then, At each stop images display of historically accurate paintings, and audio plays automatically to explain what visitors see from the comfort of their car. In addition, users can click on a link in each stop that takes them to a Youtube clip that further explains the battle and gives a deeper understanding of what took place.


Experience Gettysburg by car

With more than 1,400 monuments, markers and tablets in Gettysburg, it’s daunting to sift through all of them.  As one of the Civil War’s most decisive battles there is much to explore. The Gettysburg Battlefield Driving Tour does just that by identifying some of the more prominent markers at each stops. The InSite Gettysburg team also wanted to include local art in their app. Users will see beautiful dramatic paintings by Dale Gallon, a world renowned local artist whose art tells a history lesson in themselves. (See painting pictured above)


Download and learn more

The Gettysburg Battlefield Driving Tour gives visitors freedom to see, hear and watch the story of Gettysburg. Try the Gettysburg Battlefield Driving Tour App today on the App Store and Google Play.

Download the Gettysburg Battlefield Driving Tour App on the App Store  Available_on_the_App_Store_Badge_US-UK_135x40

Download the Gettysburg Battlefield Driving Tour App on Google Play   googleplaybadge

Want to learn more about how you can create a driving tour?



Civil War Tour, Alexandria, Virginia

The City of Alexandria utilized the App Builder Website to publish their Civil War Driving Tour App for iPhone and Android. This app allows users to “explore Civil War Alexandria and discover how Robert E. Lee’s hometown of Confederate loyalists became a major operations center for Union forces while thousands of African Americans came to the town seeking freedom and security behind Union lines.” Alexandria’s unique Civil War heritage gives visitors today the chance to see a Union fort, Confederate memorial, and museums dedicated to African American history. Check out more than two dozen distinctive sites and learn why Alexandria’s position as an occupied city made its Civil War experience unlike any other town in America – and why today Alexandria embraces its diversity as well as its past!  See why the City of Alexandria used the App Builder Website to create their app:

Q & A with Liz Williams, Assistant Director for the City of Alexandria

Q: What made you decide to build an app for your organization?

A: It was the Civil War Sesquicentennial and we wanted to share the City of Alexandria’s Civil War history to as many people as possible. The mobile app was the perfect way to provide that information to guests and residents, meeting them where they are – on their smartphones.

Q: What is the best part about your app?

A: The best part of the app is the historic photos we used to showcase each stop. It brings a different perspective when you are looking at each stop.

Q: What did you like about working with Tour Buddy to create your app?

A: The platform was easy to use, allowing us to upload all the information ourselves.  And the staff was extremely helpful is providing good tips to make the product the best it could be.

Q: What advice would you give to other organizations who are looking to create an app?

A: Make sure you have an end goal in mind before you start. Plus high resolution graphics, a good data collector, and a skillful writer.

Foreign Language App Tour at Stone Mountain Park, Georgia

Stone Mountain Park App | Foreign Language App Tour

Stone Mountain Park’s recent app launch using the Tour Buddy App Builder features a multi-guide app.  The app showcases 6 foreign language self-guided app tours and enhances engagement.  A self guided tour app creates a better experience for both the park employees and visitors. Caroline Figiel of Creative Digital Productions shares more about the experience using the Tour Buddy App Builder.  To learn more about using Tour Buddy to create a foreign language app tour for your destination, click here. 

Creative Digital Production’s  Mission:

Our Mission…to interpret Stone Mountain’s and Georgia’s history using engaging audio spots on an affordable and easy to navigate delivery platform in multiple languages.

The Results: A Foreign Language App Tour Featuring 6 Languages

A beautifully crafted 6 language mobile app where visitors can imagine another time and place; designed so that each user can take a self-guided tour of each site and know exactly where they are on the GPS enabled map without the attention of a tour guide or fumbling with a paper map.

The Buzz: Visitor Engagement & Experience

Do park employees on the front lines of tourist engagement feel proud to offer a quality product? Yes! Is visitor feedback overwhelming for both the content and the delivery platform? You betcha!

The Story: 

As interpretation specialists, we knew that we had been given.  We did not receive mounds of boring information for a report, but instead… the seeds for some really good storytelling about Georgia and the mountain which would “edu-tain” every person who downloads the app.  Stone Mountain itself is not only the largest exposed granite mass in the world, but is also the site of the largest bas-relief carving in the world. Did you know because of political events, temperamental artists, and financial struggles, the carving took 55 years to complete? That in itself is a sweeping saga worthy of a summer blockbuster!

From the beginning, my partner Danny and I knew we would uncover many fascinating events and amusing legends. So, we decided in partnership with Stone Mountain Park, to let many of the stories tell themselves through fictionalized characters based on the time period of the subject matter. As the scripts began to unfold, our characters came to represent a cross section of Georgia’s population in the 1700-1900s.  These characters include  a frontier doctor, farmer’s wife, field slave, rich planter, and real life super hero.  Some of their stories would tickle your funny bone while others would tug at your heart.

We began script writing and production of  the initial 22 “edu-taining” audio spots.   In phase two, we began implementation.  In order for media interpretation to be successful, the production can’t stand alone.  If technology fails, the carefully crafted content won’t be heard and users will become frustrated.  Therefore, we made it a priority to offer a delivery platform that allowed visitors the best user experience. With 132 media files, Tour Buddy’s Multi-Guide App was our best choice.

Launching the Foreign Language App Tour:

The app was very easy to load and could handle a lot of media because it was a Multi-Guide App. We were able to create one tour and then copy it so that we did not have to enter data multiple times. Once downloaded, visitors enter in a special passcode for their specific language to find the GPS guided tours.  The tours include insightful video links, picture galleries and social media links.

Stone Mountain Park can now reach each visitor to inform, engage and entertain.  These experiences create lifelong memories and a unique understanding of Stone Mountain Park and its history.

That in itself is worthy of a tale!


How to improve visitors' experience with a mobile app tour

3 Destinations Embracing International Visitors

Let visitors explore a destination with a map based audio guide on their own smartphone.

Every day millions of visitors travel the globe to enrich their understanding of life beyond their own little corner of the world.  We are always excited to work with destinations and tour companies to enhance the experience of foreign visitors by offering multi-media tours in their native language so that they can leave with a better understanding of the stories and history that they came to learn.


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Ripley’s Red Train Tour  in St. Augustine, FL is offering Spanish and French speaking visitors access to GPS triggered French and Spanish language version of their popular train tour around the city. After purchasing their tickets, French and Spanish speakers download the Tour Buddy App and sign in to access the tour in their language. As the train passes points of interest, the guide automatically plays audio and shows images and text about the point of interest. Now, the Red Train Tour’s historic tour of over 20 stops in breathtaking St. Augustine has been made available to all of its guests and only passengers who board the Red Train Tour will be able to access the guides.


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Stone Mountain Park, near  Atlanta is Georgia’s most popular tourist destination and offers 3,200 acres of natural beauty and activities for the whole family.  Visitors can now experience a self-guided audio tour of the property in English, French, Spanish, Japanese and Korean through the Stone Mountain multi-guide app.  The tour includes historical information about the park and points out activities and fun facts for kids as well as an interactive map that allows visitors to easily navigate to all of the points of interest.  It is the perfect complement for visitors that want to explore. Once visitors have purchased their tickets, they are able to sign in and access the tour in their language on iOS or Android.


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Savannah, Georgia welcomes over 14 million visitors each year who come to experience the largest historic district in the US with well preserved 19th century buildings and 21st century culture.  While  tour companies offer a wide range of English language tours for every interest, visitors who are not as strong in English will inevitably miss out on a lot of interesting context.  Visitors can now download Savannah Experiences for iOS and Android.

Learn more about how you can use Tour Buddy at your destination to connect with international visitors using foreign language tours & check out how the Savannah Experiences app and Stone Mountain app enhance international visitor experience using foreign language tours.

Bonaventure Cemetery Tour App available for download today!

The Bonaventure Historical Society wanted to create an app tour that would tell visitors the stories of all those buried in the Bonaventure Cemetery in Savannah, GA.  By creating a mobile app tour, they were able to provide a self guided tour to visitors as well as bring in revenue to help fund the cemetery.  Read more about their app.

As one of Savannah’s most visited attractions, The Bonaventure Cemetery has a hauntingly beautiful landscape and wealth of stories to tell. The Bonaventure Historical Society created  a mobile app tour so that more visitors could hear and experience the stories and images at their own pace with a GPS triggered app. Many important historical figures and artists are buried at Bonaventure including poet Conrad Aiken, Academy Award-winning lyricist Johnny Mercer and Georgia’s first governor Edward Telfair. There are two apps available through the Savannah Experiences App including Bonaventure Cemetery Tour LITE which is free and has a select number of stops that users can preview, and Bonaventure Cemetery Tour ($4.99) that has the full tour of 31 stops.


All proceeds from the app purchase go directly to support the preservation efforts of the cemetery by the Bonaventure Historical Society. Come experience this rich historical 100 acre cemetery and download the Bonaventure Cemetery Tour App in the Savannah Experiences App on the App Store and Google Play today.


How to create a Hands Free Tour Experience

Now it is easier than ever to turn your Tour Buddy App into a hands free Automatic Tour Guide that plays information at the right points while you are driving. Users can ‘opt-in’ to adjust the settings in the settings page and the new ‘Quick Settings’ feature on the playbar. Take a look!

1. Settings Page:

Click the ‘Settings’ wheel in the corner of the app landing page.

landing page

Turn on the following features on the ‘Settings’ page:

settings page


2. Quick Settings Feature

Click the ‘…’ on the bottom right hand side of the playbar.


Turn on the following features in ‘Quick Settings’:

quick settings


Explanation of Settings:

GPS Auto Play

Allow the audio to play automatically when you pass a gps point


Automatically play audio if you choose a different stop

Audio Stays On

Keep audio playing if you close the app to access a different part of your phone

Kiosk Mode

Keep your phone ‘awake’ while you are driving so that you don’t’ have to touch it

Compass Navigation(depends on the tour)

This allows the phone to play only when its travelling in the specified direction

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And you’re ready for a hands free, app driving tour experience! These features are available with all Tour Buddy IOS7 apps.

Want to create your own Driving Tour?

You can easily create your own driving tour to automatically play in your vehicle(s) or so that visitors can download it on the app store and use it themselves. Check out the pricing plans that we offer.

Case Study: Great Dane Trailers Custom App

We were very excited when Great Dane approached us to build an app to enable drivers to search and locate Great Dane Trailers sales, parts and service locations in North America.  

The app allows the user to search the locations based on keywords, nearby, or within a city, state, country.  It allows you to filter the search by the type of location; Service, Parts, Sales, Mobile, Advantage or All of the above.  The app allows you to call the service and parts locations and get directions. And the best part is that all of the information flows from the Great Dane locations database directly into our app builder platform and into the app so that the locations update automatically.  The app also features Great Dane products and upcoming events.  

 [highlight]Download the App here for iPhone and Android.[/highlight]


See a short video of the app below.

Some screenshots of the app.

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The Best Tour Guide May Be In Your Purse

We wanted to share this great article from the New York Times on Museums using mobile apps:

Museums Special Section

The Best Tour Guide May Be in Your Purse

Jim Wilson/The New York Times

HAND-HELD CURATOR IPod Touches and visitors at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.


Published: March 13, 2010


THE San Francisco Museum of Modern Art formally celebrated its 75th anniversary on Jan. 18 with an eye to attracting millennial generation multitaskers. The event included handing out to museumgoers iPod Touches loaded with a rich mix of pictures, interviews, video and graphics exploring 200 pieces in the institution’s permanent collection.

Like almost every major art museum in the country, according to communications officers here and in other cities,  the San Francisco institution is using mobile multimedia devices  —  iPods, iPhones, BlackBerrys and other smartphones  —  to tell the stories of its exhibits in new ways.

“Essentially, we’ve liberated the audio tour,” said Peter Samis, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art’s associate curator of interpretation. “We’ve developed five hours of content, made it extremely portable and easy to use, and devoted it to rediscovering aspects of our collection and its history. This is not about techno-fetishism. It’s about focusing on artworks in meaningful sound and video.”

Art museums have always viewed communications as their primary mission. Never, though, have the editorial, design and production staffs of art museums been busier than they are now. Digitization has steadily brought down the cost of the software and tools of multimedia production  —  audio, video and interactive motion graphics. More powerful and available online access has made smartphones and other mobile devices ubiquitous and more useful.

Mr. Samis said his museum developed the content for the mobile tour with its own staff. Nousguide, a Vienna-based content management company, developed the presentation software. The intent is to marry the story behind a painting or piece of sculpture to the hand-held online and multimedia communications revolution. Last year, a survey by the Pew Internet and American Life Project predicted that by 2020 mobile devices would be the primary connection to the Internet for most people in the world.

Museum communications departments welcome the challenge. Since the 1960s, when tape recorders and audio tours were first introduced, art museums have embraced technology to provide more engaging ways for patrons to interact with exhibits. In 2002, art museums began delivering audio tours on cellphones. Later in the decade, interactive producers like Second Story, a Portland, Ore., design company, delivered  multimedia kiosks and online  programming to museums. In May 2008, the San Jose Museum of Art was one of the first to produce a mobile multimedia tour of its exhibit of the evolution of robots. Content was delivered on  the first-generation iPod Touch.

Art museums are putting mobile devices to use in creative ways. In Louisville, Ky., the 21c Museum, which describes itself as the only museum in the United States dedicated exclusively to displaying art made in the 21st century, in April will introduce an iPhone multimedia tour that takes advantage of a bar code reader app available at Apple’s App Store. Bar codes placed next to works of art in the museum link iPhone owners to multimedia about the pieces.

The Minneapolis Institute of Arts developed an interactive  program for its iAfrica exhibition for smartphone owners. They can download to their device pictures of the art and other exhibits, and an interactive audio feature that enables the user to pluck (virtually) and hear the sounds generated by the long metal tongues of a lamellaphone, a sub-Saharan instrument.

“People want to be part of the learning. They want to participate,” said Kaywin Feldman, the museum’s director and president. “We use the technology to help them better understand works in the collection that can seem remote to a 21st-century visitor.”

In February, the Dallas Museum of Art began a multimedia mobile smartphone tour of its Wendy and Emery Reves collection of 19th-century photography and paintings. The content includes pictures, audio interviews and video documentaries and interviews coded for each artwork. The museum strengthened its wireless access, and then made the multimedia content available on its Web site at

“We made a decision to keep total production of the content completely in-house  —  Web, coding, design, editing, music, talent, posting,” said Gail Davitt, the museum’s director of education. “There was a clear sense that we didn’t want to end up dependent on the device of the year, but rather to produce content and then be flexible with how we might use it.”

The Brooklyn Museum of Art photographed much of its collection and put it online in March 2009 with a software application that invited people to share the content. Four months later, Adam Shackelford, the chief technical officer of Iconoclash Media, a Brooklyn-based Web site and iPhone app company, introduced Brooklyn Museum Mobile Collection as a free app in the iPhone store. Patrons can now tour the collection with their phone whether they visit or not.

The Indianapolis Museum of Art produced a multimedia iPod Touch tour of its “Sacred Spain: Art and Belief in the Spanish World” exhibition, which began in October and ended in January. The production included audio interviews and video documentaries along with period music and pictures. Each feature was number-coded to pieces in the exhibition. Visitors to the museum paid $5 to rent the devices.

“We are helping visitors learn the story behind the content. We are telling things that are interesting,” said Robert Stein, a computer scientist who serves as the museum’s chief information officer. “Some of what we are doing with mobile device also is betting on where things are going.”

One of the most interesting mobile multimedia features at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art describes in detail René Magritte’s “Les Valeurs Personnelles,” the artist’s  1952 painting of oversized male toiletries. The feature includes an interactive display of the painting; touching the comb, mirror or shaving dish opens a window for more video, text or audio content that explains the context and importance of the object.

Ramon and Julia Rios, residents of San Diego who were visiting the museum, handed their driver’s licenses to the information desk and were handed back iPod Touches. “I saw people coming over to get the devices,” said Mr. Rios. “I thought, O.K., I’d like to try it. Let’s see what it’s like.”

Later, on the second floor of the museum, Mrs. Rios was asked about the multimedia tour. “I like it. There’s a lot here,” she said, holding up the device. “It’s easy to use and very informative. You have so much more information with this.”


Check out our Virtual Booth at the Museums & Mobile Conference


NEW YORK, NY– (September 19, 2011) – The Museums and Mobile III Online Conference
(MMIII) — a global online professional networking and learning event for museum
professionals will take place, entirely over the Internet on October 24 to 26,
2011. There is still time to register at “Early Bird”  prices through October 8th  for individuals, groups and low-cost site


The online conference includes a stellar lineup
of engaging and interactive case studies exploring the delivery and operation
of mobile experiences.  The sessions are
designed to address project delivery, experience design, content production,
technology solutions and operational requirements.  Participants will interact with an
outstanding international lineup of museum professionals from a range of
organizations, including:  the Museum of
Fine Arts Boston, the Detroit Institute of Art, the Smithsonian Institution,
the Stedelijk Museum, the Alaska Native Heritage Centre, and the
Andy Warhol Museum.


Continue your exploration and discovery at the FREE Museums & Mobile Virtual Expo on
October 26, 2011. The Virtual expo is a one-day, completely online trade show
for museum professionals interested in deploying mobile experiences and
creating mobile content.  Providers will be live online in a unique Virtual
Expo Hall, to guide you through their products, services and case studies of
successful mobile projects.