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From among a variety of agencies Astronaut Travel was chosen to represent the Polish Tourist Organisation in China until the end of 2012.

Astronaut Travel has won the open tender to be the Polish Tourist Organisation  to implement publicity measures in the Chinese market, taking over the PTO’s online promotions, PR, events and fam trips to Poland.

Starting from July this year, Astronaut will represent the PTO at events in key cities in China, running promotional campaigns from its headquarters in Beijing as well as its second office in Shanghai.

Previously promotions were organized directly by the Tourist Organisation, operating from Warsaw. The official PTO office in Beijing is better positioned to operate in the Chinese market, and will  provide services in Chinese, Polish, and English.

 

Polish Tourist Organisation
Beijing Office


The Turkey booth on the Beijing International Tourism Exhibition (BITE) was one the booths which got the most interest due to a huge 3D Bosphorus Bridge image and Blue Eye wishing tree.

Turkey was enthusiastically welcomed by the crowds at the eighth Beijing International Tourism Exhibition, held on June 17-19.

Features of the Turkey booth

Bosphorus Bridge

The Bosphorus Bridge in Instanbul is a major tourist attraction, linking East and West. The Turkey booth featured an 11 meter long Bosphorus Bridge 3D image and drew hundreds of photo-snapping visitors into the booth.

People on the 3D image looked like they where standing on the Bosphorus Bridge linking Europe and Asia. Headline on the background says “Turkey, More than Europe, more than Asia.”

Turkey staff also took photos, which will be posted onto Turkey’s Official KaiXinWang account, for visitors to download. Turkey’s Kaixin Wang platform also hosts Turkey travel news.

Blue Eye Wishing Tree

Another crowd-pleaser was the Turkish traditional nazars (blue eyes). Visitors wrote their holiday wishes on blue eye stickers and posted them on a wishing tree. Every day after the event the tree was chock full of stickers and needed to be cleaned for the next day.

The Turkey event was a popular attraction, drawing hundreds of people who took photos, made wishes and left their email addresses.

The BITE booth was home to six travel agents, Turkey Culture and Tourism and Turkish airlines. Astronaut Travel was responsible for finding and planning the event. The booth was built and installed by Astronauts partner agency Zhongjia.

The Beijing International Tourism Exhibition is China’s biggest and most important travel show. For more info about the BITE, click here.

As the US Visa discussion continues (described in an earlier post), more experts are chipping in their own takes on potential benefits of eased rules, sizing up the volume and impact of the Chinese tourists’ colossal spending.

Earlier this month, the U.S. Travel Association urged the government to overhaul its visa system, saying it serves as a virtual “keep out” sign.

Chinese travelers are among the world’s biggest spenders. snapping up Louis Vuitton LVMH bags and jewelry at Tiffany & Co in the world capitals they visit.

They are set to overtake their Japanese counterparts as the second-largest luxury spender behind the United States within a few years.

“Quite frankly, the Chinese tourist is today the dominant influence in the gateway cities,” Polo Ralph Lauren Chief Operating Officer Roger Farah said on a call with Wall Street analysts on Wednesday.

“Our sales at duty free are mindboggling,” said Bernd Fritz, chief executive of the perfume company Coty.

source: http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/05/26/us-luxury-summit-visas-idUSTRE74P6RO20110526

China, Japan, and Korea held the annual Trilateral Tourism Ministers’ Meeting at Pyeongchang, Korea, two days ago. This post contains the highlights, as reported by Arirang and YONHAP News.

The ministers agreed to develop 10 “golden tour routes” running through the three countries, and report the outcome of the project at next year’s meeting in Japan.

The three countries also agreed to strengthen cooperation to minimize the negative effects that natural disasters, terrorism and diseases have on tourism, while jointly developing special tourism promotion programs and a crisis management manual.

source:
http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr/business/2011/05/29/51/0502000000AEN20110529002700315F.HTML

The ministers agreed to work towards establishing the “Tourism Vision 2020” plan, a blueprint for opening up an era of major tourism exchange between the three East Asian countries in the year 2020.

They also vowed to monitor unfair activities like selling low-cost dumping package products.

China and Japan’s tourism ministers pledged support Pyeongchang’s plan for its bid to host the 2018 Winter Olympic Games.

source: http://www.arirang.co.kr/News/News_View.asp?nseq=116466&code=Ne2&category=2

A new strategy for success in doing business in China, a land where deals are notoriously slow, is highly relevant to the tourism business. Ottawa’s major newspaper, The Ottawa Citizen reports.

With the Beijing International Tourism Expo 2011 set for June 15 to 18, the Ottawa mayor and city representatives are making up a delegation in the hopes of bringing Chinese tourists and their cash to the city. Their proposals include a “marquee,” 400- to 500-room hotel to support the influx of visitors.

But what kind of clout does the mayor of a capital city have in China?

Intriguingly, a great deal.

The Citizen reports that the mayor of Beijing “is one of the top 10 most powerful officials in China,”  revealing the high esteem some countries confer upon mayors. On concurrent trips to one such country, the mayor of Ottawa was able to score meetings with some high officials that the provincial premier couldn’t get.

Read more: http://www.ottawacitizen.com/life/Watson+China+promote+tourism+Ottawa/4811726/story.html#ixzz1NLBrtoHu
http://www.ottawacitizen.com/news/Mayor+status+opens+doors+China/4823578/story.html

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BRUSSELS – Professor Geoffrey Lipman, Director of greenearth.travel, said that it was time to to look for more tourists from China to boost African economies, following the strengthening trade patterns between the regions and the emergence of China as a leading global tourism player.

MORE INFORMATION

The central point of Lipman’s remarks, addressing the IIPT Summit in Zambia and the ITC Summit in Turkey, was the huge potential for the world’s least developed counties (LDC) (particularly in Africa) to transition out of poverty through green growth – the 4 decade strategic transition to a renewable energy-based world with temperature increases limited to 2 degrees; a coherent response to increasing global socio-economic, poverty, and climate challenges, with population growth and resources decrease and while ensuring conservation to maintain species balance, inclusion to maintain human balance, and digitalization to manage the low carbon shift. He identified the massive potential dividends ahead for LDC’s through travelism (the travel and tourism supply and demand chains) as a universal services export, a producer of wealth and jobs, a catalyst for other economic activity, and a key industry to increase human understanding and happiness.

Speech at www.greenearth.travel.

Read the full article at www.eturbonews.com.

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Dr. Adam Wu, chief operating officer of China Business Network, attended last week’s Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Investment Conference in Montego Bay, Jamaica, visiting a region where the Chinese government has already made several substantial direct investments and plans more.

Wu said Chinese tend to travel in groups and like to sightsee and visit multiple destinations. He offered some the following tips to those seeking to cater to the Chinese market:

• Convey your message in Chinese. While 60 million Chinese earn an annual income over 20,000 USD, only 10 million people can speak English.


• It’s best to market online (incorporate your site onto World Travel Online). Most Chinese travel professionals depend on the Internet to research and book travel. Plus, there are more Internet users in China (457 million) than the U.S. has in total population (311 million).

• The Chinese population doesn’t generally have access to the Internet accessed by the rest of the world, so marketers need to use the China Wide Web, the country’s own Internet.

• Marketers need to educate Chinese operators on (unfamiliar to them) local brands.

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Sources:

http://www.hotelnewsnow.com/Articles.aspx/5534/Chinese-supply-demand-making-waves-in-Caribbean
http://lhonline.com/news/china_caribbean_investment_development_construction_tourism_marketing_0516/

North Queensland Tourism picks Canto-pop stars to promote the region’s beauty to Australia’s fastest-growing tourist market

The Twins pop stars, Charlene Choi and Gillian Chung

The Twins will appear in social media and TV campaigns promoting the Great Barrier Reef and Cairns. The stars have been filmed in music videos and photos at various tourist destinations.

“The Twins have already come over to Cairns to shoot their new music videos and have done photo shoots for their online photo album,” said Tang.“There will be a TV program that will debut the girls’experience in the region as they work on their videos.”

“They will also give their fans updates on China’s Twitter site Weibo to promote their experiences in the Great Barrier Reef region.”

On May 18, the Twins officially launched their new music videos and promote their 10th anniversary via video conference from Shenzhen, China.

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Sources:
http://www.cnngo.com/sydney/visit/oz-tourism-finally-gets-it-right-canto-pop-bait-123715#ixzz1MakQuEW7
http://www.qutnews.com/2011/05/11/qld-tourism-hopes-chinese-twins-a-star-attraction/

The US Embassy in Shanghai has set up a pilot project for group visa interviews for Chinese nationals at the end of last year – a move that will shorten US Visa application times.

This is in response to Chinese travel agencies’ call for a simplified visa process and a larger quota in order to match the growing demand of Chinese travellers.

A survey by the United States Travel Association (USTA) of 1,500 travellers from Brazil, China and India suggests that an overwhelming majority of travellers find the US a tough place to visit. An astounding 94% of Brazilian travellers said they found it “somewhat difficult”, “very difficult” or “nearly impossible” to travel to the US. Roughly 80% of Chinese and Indian travellers echoed those sentiments.

“Increasing travel to the United States is the most effective form of economic stimulus supporting communities, injecting billions into the US economy and creating millions of new American jobs,” the report says. “Recapturing America’s historic share of worldwide overseas travel would create up to an additional 1.3 million US jobs by 2020 compared with 2010 and produce $859 billion in cumulative additional economic output.”

The average Chinese tourist spends $7,000 in the US – well above the 2009 average of $2,580 per overseas tourist. Of course, faced with onerous visa restrictions, that tourist is in the minority to begin with: Of the 30 million Chinese who traveled abroad in 2009, merely 735,000 came to the United States.

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Read more:
http://www.bangkokpost.com/business/economics/237219/us-urged-to-ease-visas-for-three-giant-markets
http://www.visabureau.com/america/news/19-01-2011/us-embassy-in-china-seeks-to-streamline-us-visa-process.aspx
http://www.nydailynews.com/opinions/2011/05/14/2011-05-14_roll_out_the_welcome_mat.html#ixzz1MZPI6eIJ

According to Egypt’s Tourism Minister Munir Abdel Nour, a sharp fall of tourist arrivals early in the year had caused economic losses of more than one billion U.S. dollars.

From February to April, an further estimated reduction of 3 million tourists, lead to estimated losses of 2.3 billion U.S. dollars, he added.

Last year, the country hosted 12.7 million tourists and reaped 13 billion U.S. dollars, or 11.3 percent of its gross domestic product. The number of Chinese tourists to Egypt last year stood at 106,000.

A Chinese delegation of 18 journalists arrived in Cairo on Monday for a five-day tour, at the invitation of Egyptian authorities.

The delegation came from 12 media organizations.

For the full article, please click here.

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Michael Kaltenhauser

Founder and director of Astronaut, a marketing agency based in Beijing which is specialized on promoting destinations to Chinese outbound tourists

Laura Hine

Online Communications Assistant at Astronaut