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Posted: June 12, 2014 10:00 p.m.

Trolley to take hotel guests downtown

Beginning this month, Covington Tourism Director Jenny McDonald will launch the chamber’s new trolley and hotel partnership to bring business travelers to Covington’s Historic Square.

“We don’t have all our supplies in yet, but we’re hoping to start in the next couple weeks,” said Chamber President Hunter Hall, who said hotels will begin placing boards detailing the trolley’s route on their porticos.

The trolley will begin its route at the Hampton and Holiday Inns, where it will pick up travelers at 6, 7, 8 and 9 p.m. and bring them downtown. Each will be armed with a “Hollywood of the South” lanyard filled with coupons they can redeem in the area. The trolley will drop travelers back off at their destination at 10 p.m. each night.

The coupons contained on each lanyard can be redeemed at local venues such as Bradley’s and Just Dogs, of which have already seen a lot of coupons being used by customers.

The partnership is a pilot project. Hall described it as an extension of what they do at the chamber; rather than having to get information at a specific venue, travelers will be able to take part in a mobile visitor’s center.

“We are very excited about this venture. It is an experiment on our part,” Hall said.

The trolley has been rented for just five months, giving the chamber time to test the project and see if their marketing strategy yields results for local businesses downtown.

“If it works, we’ll look for opportunities to grow it,” Hall said.

After the rental period, Hall hopes that the private sector will contact the chamber to partner.

Hall explained that the chamber does not necessarily want to be in the trolley business, but it gives them the opportunity to work with Main Street and create a market.

In the meantime they will be tracking coupon redemption and number of riders using the service.

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