New Online Tools Make Ohio Travel Planning Fast, Fun, Social adds Itinerary Builder, Social Media Aggregator, DiscoveringOhio Blog

COLUMBUS, Ohio - The Ohio Tourism Division today introduced two innovative new travel planning tools -- an Itinerary Builder and a Social Media Aggregator -- along with the DiscoveringOhio Blog, all located on Ohio's official tourism website,

"The Itinerary Builder, Social Media Aggregator and blog are important components of the Tourism Division's strategy aimed at increasing our relationships with Ohio travelers," said State Tourism Director Amir Eylon. "By affording our guests the ability to create and share itineraries, to easily see traveler posts on social networking platforms and to read and respond to personal blog stories, we create opportunities for them to interact with us and each other to share Ohio's tourism experiences far beyond our means with paid media."

The new Itinerary Builder allows travel planners to assemble a customized travel itinerary by selecting tourism experiences from "What to Do," "Where to Stay" and "When to Go," or by searching for a destination with "Find Attractions." Based on their choices, users can add stops and information to their itineraries, map their trip and add driving directions. Travelers who need a little inspiration to get started can browse suggested itineraries from Ohio's Tourism Industry as well as from consumers who choose to make their itineraries public for others to enjoy. Once travelers have created an itinerary, they can print it, share it with friends via e-mail or Facebook, or send it to their smartphone for reference and handy directions on the road.

Those who want to see what other travelers are saying about their Ohio experiences will enjoy the new Social Media Aggregator located at the bottom of the home page. The Social Media Aggregator is a real-time, moving strip that features an amalgamation of what people are posting about their Ohio travels on Facebook, Twitter, MyOhio and Flickr. Visitors are encouraged to click "Share Your Ohio Story" to add their own Ohio stories, images and videos.

For the latest travel ideas, visitors are invited to interact with Tourism Division staff and guest bloggers on the blog. The blog features stories about anything and everything tourism-related in Ohio on a timely basis. From new museum exhibit openings to spectator sports and ziplines to foodie scene, the diverse Ohio Tourism Division staff will introduce travelers to both new and time-tested tourism experiences. Comments and questions are encouraged, as are suggestions for future blog posts.

About the Ohio Tourism Division 
The Ohio Tourism Division is the premier source of information for travelers and media about Ohio's vibrant tourism experiences, attractions and economy. Division marketing programs contributed to an estimated $36 billion in total sales in 2009 and 437,000 jobs sustained by visitors to the state. A part of the Ohio Department of Development, the Division's mission is to promote and celebrate Ohio's unique travel opportunities and market the state's outstanding quality of life.