G'day China

Thursday 31 January 2013

G'day China

An estimated 500 Chinese travellers will visit the Douglas region as part of Chinese New Year celebrations next month.

While still a fledgling market for tourism operators, the number represents significant growth from 2012 figures where 120 Chinese visitors to the region were recorded.

Tourism Port Douglas and Daintree (TPDD) executive officer Doug Ryan said a number of larger employers were leading the way in the push for ever-increasing visitation from China.

"Over the last twelve months there has been some activity from some of our major players in the Chinese market and they include Sheraton, Quicksilver, QT, and Sea Temple," he said.

"Some of the smaller operators have also been pushing into that market."

Mr Ryan said that TPDD had been facilitating training sessions to help local businesses become "China ready", particularly for Chinese New Year on Sunday 10 February.

He said that due to the demand for day trips out of Cairns, the number of visitors to our part of the world could exceed expectations.

"There'll be a fair bit of group business coming through on day stuff as well. As Cairns is fairly full for the day trips to the reef and rainforest, that will overflow up into our region."

Mr Ryan offered some tips for local businesses when dealing with Chinese travellers.

"Chinese are quite superstitious. For example, don't get them to sign anything with a red pen as it's considered very unlucky.

"Eight is their lucky number, but don't put them in a room with number four, it's unlucky. It's important when you assign them to a room or table, don't put them on (or in) number four.

"One of their big things is (keeping) face. It's important that they maintain their dignity...We'll laugh at ourselves, but it's important not to do that to them.

"And wherever they go they love photos and videos. If you see them around town, take their photo and they'll love you for life."