Tourism professionals from Southern California held a meeting in March to discuss ways to attract Chinese tourists and improve the quality of their travel services.
Lv Donglong, president of Best of USA Marketing, who organized the meeting called "Southern California-China Tourism Business Opportunity Conference", said that the pattern of consumption by Chinese tourists visiting the U.S. has changed a lot in recent years. With high purchasing power, they now prefer high quality travel services. Lv hoped that the conference will help the tourism industry find more business opportunities.
Sun Wentie, director of Chinese American Entrepreneurs Society, said that there were 15 million to 20 million high-income families in China in 2005 and the number would increase to 50 million in 2015. Sun stated that these Chinese families often regard the U.S. as their first choice for overseas travel and they intend to choose upmarket tourism sites during their journey. Sun added that changes by the U.S. visa service further encouraged more Chinese to visit the country.
Ann Gallaugher, vice chairman of the tourism department of the Anaheim and Orange County Sightseeing Bureau suggested that hotels should be fully prepared to receive Chinese tourists, providing Chinese language speaking staff and Chinese publications to bring them closer to Chinese tourists. In addition, she pointed out that hotels should have Internet access as most Chinese are used to surfing the Web.
Pattie Davidson, the managing director of Buena Park Tourism Bureau proposed that tourism professionals cooperate with local tourism bureaus. She also stressed that American tourism professionals should build websites providing Chinese language services to help Chinese tourists search for information.
(China Hospitality News March 19, 2009)