NZ needs to shape up and impress Chinese tourists
Wed, 25 May 2011 6:23p.m.
By Leanne Malcolm
New Zealand tourist operators have been told to sharpen their act if they want a piece of the affluent Chinese market.
Hundreds of international tourism buyers are in Queenstown this week for the industry's annual showcase, and they have been told New Zealand is not ready to capitalize on forecast strong improvements in the Chinese and Asian markets in the second half of this year.
It is Queenstown’s chance to shine as the global downturn and the Christchurch earthquake take their toll on international visitor numbers.
Six hundred buyers from the world's tourism industry are at TRENZ, sampling some of the country's biggest attractions.
Among them are 38 buyers from China, a market with huge growth potential, if New Zealand steps up.
“These are well travelled visitors, they expect international service,” says Tourism NZ’s Kevin Bowler.
With traditional markets like the UK and America falling away in recent months, everyone wants a piece of China, but tourism industry leaders say some operators find that change daunting and need to tailor their experiences.
“Chinese are no different, they're not stupid, they’re going to go ‘ok I get it, beautiful country, but you know where else can I go where I'll be made to feel much more welcome’,” says Chinese travel expert Lilly Choi-Lee.
Offering up Asian food is an obvious way to make visitors feel welcome.
“Food that these visitors are used to, particularly breakfast and catering to the vegetarian needs of the markets like India and Malaysia,” says Mr Bowler.
Sixty million Chinese will leave their country for holidays this year. Extra air services into Christchurch should bring some of them down under.
As well as the scenery, they're sampling our style as well, a valuable chance to market a resort as it heads into uncertain times.
The value of the tourism dollar is huge. It brings in $9.5 billion annually, so TRENZ organisers hope they've got the message across to operators - adapt and the rewards will come.
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5/06/2011 11:26:55 p.m.
OKPeople, my soul is herefore for sale, roll upNo.1 Ive got to start cooking and eating Chinese , well Egg Foo yong is on the boil and I shall offer it to any I see.No. 2 "Chinese are not stupid" Ok, cant disagree, after all they dont allow immigrants to China so they must have a few clues.No. 3 India and Malaysia are all vegetarians apparently, No. 4 Chinese need TOP CLASS SERVICE or they might desert me and go where they will feel more welcome-like Tibet or E Turkestan or Java.
26/05/2011 10:30:42 p.m.
I thought you went to other countries to sample all thing's local.
Why would I travel to China to eat kiwi food? In fact if I went there and only got kiwi food I would NOT be happy.
I'm missing something here obviously.
26/05/2011 5:02:41 p.m.
James J.Read wrote:
Clearly those who don't want Asian visitors are ignorant of the economic importance of the tourist industry and of the number of jobs it creates. They also seem ignorant of the percentage of overseas travellers who are Chinese or Japanese.To do as some writers suggest would be economic suicide.
26/05/2011 4:20:02 p.m.
Dire straits wrote:
What an enlightened set of comments. Let's hope they aren't widely read in China.
Noone is asking NZ to sell its soul - just to try and make tourists feel welcome.
With attitudes like these NZ will soon be an irrelevant backwater populated by embittered mediocrities and good only as a supplier of milk powder.
26/05/2011 2:00:03 p.m.
You must be joking--here they are, telling us what "they" want, before they even get here.The boot is on the other foot i think, we tell them how we behave, here in our country. When they get here in suficient numbers to vote us out--then we will do what they want.The performance of our politicians will date this happening within the next couple of elections, i guess.---OH YEAH!
26/05/2011 12:06:47 p.m.
@DanMust be related to Kyle Chapman.....
25/05/2011 10:04:21 p.m.
And why should we impress the chinese? We want to discourage them from coming here not encourage. There are far too many Asians in this country as it is. We are experiencing an Asian Invasion. Taking our jobs, buying up our land and resources, crowding our univeritys etc..... Enough is Enough.
25/05/2011 9:13:40 p.m.
They all want to go to wellywood!
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