Monthly Archives: June 2008

Inaugural tour of Chinese group leisure travelers to the United States

The National Tour Association (NTA) and the Travel Industry Association hosted a welcome event June 19, 2008, marking the inaugural tour of Chinese group leisure travelers to the United States.

More than 260 Chinese travelers were in attendance, along with U.S. and Chinese government and industry leaders. Guests included China National Tourism Administration Chairman Shao Qiwei, U.S. Ambassador to the People’s Republic of China Clark Randt, U.S. Department of Commerce Secretary Carlos M. Gutierrez, Travel Industry Association President and CEO Roger Dow, National Tour Association Chairman and CEO Bob Hoelscher, CTP, and NTA President Lisa Simon, CTP.

“NTA is proud to join with TIA in hosting this monumental event as the U.S. opens its doors to these new international leisure visitors,” said NTA Chairman and CEO Bob Hoelscher, CTP. “NTA tour operators participating in the China Inbound Program are ready to assist Chinese travel agents, and the initial NTA list included more than 90 U.S.-based tour operators.”

Following this inaugural event, six different groups of Chinese travelers will now tour Washington, D.C., and New York before traveling to Los Angeles, Hawaii, and San Francisco.

“This welcome event marks the beginning of a great time for the U.S.,” said NTA President Lisa Simon, CTP. “We have the opportunity to boost the U.S. economy and project a welcoming image to these visitors. NTA hopes each of these travelers will go back to China with an incredible travel experience and plan to return to the United States often.”

Simon added that “NTA is the industry partner that has enabled the Memorandum of Understanding to be facilitated by implementing the list of tour operators approved to work with Chinese travel agents.”

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1st Chinese tour group arrive in Washington

The first group of Chinese tourists arrived in Washington’s Dulles International airport Tuesday night local time.
There were more than 200 travelers from Beijing, Shanghai and Guangdong. They’re on a 12-day tour, which will take them to Washington, New York and Los Angeles. Their arrival in Washington DC coincides with the fourth round of China-US Strategic Economic Dialogue in the States, which is significant for the opening of US-bound Chinese tours.

Local governments have arranged a series of welcome ceremonies for the Chinese tourists. The New York Tourism Bureau will host a cocktail party on their arrival. And the Los Angeles Tourism Bureau is welcoming the Chinese tourists with “China week”.

The US is China’s fifth largest tourist destination. Last year, over 710,000 Chinese people visited the US, that’s up 12 percent compared with the previous year.

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