Inbound tourism drive sparks optimistic outlook(6)

2024-06-07 08:03:24China Daily Editor : Li Yan ECNS App Download

So much to offer

Like the US tour operators' representative Dale, Laura Mandala from the United States was also invited to join the two tourism events last month.

Mandala runs a tour research firm in Alexandria, Virginia, and believes the promotion of remarkable attractions like China's UNESCO World Heritage Sites will encourage more US travelers to visit "because they cannot see them anywhere else".

She added that the easiest segments to target are travelers who have already visited China and those from Asia.

She said she was still mesmerized by her "wonderful" spa experience in mountain hot springs in Chongqing in 2019, when she also took a cruise trip along the Yangtze River.

"It was fantastic, and it's a trip I can sell to women travelers," she said.

Brian Linden, who has lived in Yunnan province for more than two decades and runs a hotel, said he was glad to join the events in Beijing and Xi'an.

"It's been exciting to see so many Americans and also other foreigners. Everyone discussing travel again makes me feel more optimistic," Linden said.

He said he hopes more similar meetings will be staged in the future in China.

A senior player in the industry who has received many inbound travelers over the years, Linden proposed associating China travel with the idea of being "cool". "I've been to more than 110 countries, but China has so many more scenic spots to offer and many of them are worth seeing," Linden said.

He also suggested the country further tap into its well-developed high-speed railway for inbound travelers.

"We should have a special pass for foreigners, a special pass that they could buy. So for two weeks or three weeks, they would be able to travel throughout China by train," he said.

"There's still a lot more about China that needs to be shared with global travelers," he added.

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