HongKong

The Hong Kong Tourism Board spends HK$100 million on promotional activities, providing tourists with gift vouchers for transportation, dining and designated stores

The Hong Kong Tourism Board spends HK0 million on promotional activities, providing tourists with gift vouchers for transportation, dining and designated stores


The Hong Kong Tourism Board will offer tourists coupons to buy transportation, meals and merchandise at designated stores as part of a HK$100 million (US$12.8 million) promotional campaign to entice tourists in the near-term restoration of the two countries. return after quarantine-free travel. cities and mainland China.

According to the commission, tourists can use the coupons to spend and get discounts at more than 130 attractions, dining outlets and retail outlets, as well as redeem drinks at more than 100 restaurants, bars and hotels across the city. The agency will also host an 18-day Lunar New Year mega-event in Victoria Harbour, in a bid to revive Hong Kong’s tourism industry, which has been shut down for nearly three years by the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to sources, Chief Executive Lee Ka-chao will announce more details about the campaign, including more information on the coupon scheme.

Visitors will receive offers from more than 130 attractions, restaurants and retailers.Photo: Xie Mei

Lee said earlier that the city will revive tourism by launching promotional activities in February, when more tourists and business travelers are expected to return.

To welcome the Lunar Year of the Rabbit on January 22, the committee will hold a large-scale Victoria Harbor sightseeing event from next Thursday to February 5.

The event will feature giant “Lucky Rabbit” installations and Victoria Harbor-themed artwork in Central, Admiralty, Wan Chai and Tsim Sha Tsui.

“This year’s Lunar New Year celebrations will be the first large-scale event after cross-border travel resumes,” said executive director Zheng Dingyi.

Hong Kongers snap up high-speed rail tickets to mainland before high-speed rail opens

Hong Kong and the mainland resumed quarantine-free travel on Jan. 8 after the central government abandoned its zero-coronavirus policy.

A board spokesman said the tourism industry was expected to gradually recover after factors such as air capacity, manpower shortages and uncertain economic outlook were resolved.

“Based on the latest situation, visitors are expected to come mainly from certain markets, including the mainland and Southeast Asia,” she said.

“Therefore, (the board of directors) will increase the promotion efforts in stages according to the actual situation of each business, to ensure that resources are used properly and the promotion effect is exerted.”

Other strategies include attracting celebrities, influencers and business leaders to spread positive messages about Hong Kong to the mainland and Southeast Asian markets.

The committee will also issue 500,000 air tickets worth HK$2 billion, which the Airport Authority budgeted three years ago to lure travelers back to Hong Kong.

Yang Miu Myao, executive director of the Tourism Industry Council, said the measures were “comprehensive”, but urged the authorities to provide more specific details on how to attract industry leaders from local and overseas markets to boost tourism.

While face masks are still mandatory in Hong Kong, Yang said she was confident it would not pose a huge barrier to tourists from short-haul destinations such as Thailand and Japan.

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Hong Kong launched a HK$100 million promotional campaign to revive Hong Kong tourism.Photo: Chen Xiaomei

“Even in Bangkok and Japan, people still wear masks … but in other places like the UK, Europe and the US, people might not like to wear masks because they don’t wear them there,” she said.

Ip Hing-ning, president of the Hong Kong Association of Travel Agents, urged the authorities to introduce more financial incentives to encourage airlines to operate more flights to Hong Kong.

“I do recommend that the Hong Kong government come up with some subsidy schemes, such as waiving or reducing some costs for airlines, such as parking fees and other airport charges,” he said.

“They not only benefit local airlines such as Cathay Pacific, but also those who want to resume flights to Hong Kong … Then tourism business will definitely rise again.”

According to the bureau, about 2,400 to 4,500 tourists come to the city every day, and incoming travelers are required to undergo a three-day medical observation.

After the restrictions were lifted, that number rose to more than 10,000 a day, with leisure travelers “increasing slightly” since all entry controls were lifted.

Tourists visiting Hong Kong reached 55.9 million in 2019, of which mainland tourists accounted for the majority.

Meanwhile, Guangzhou Nansha Passenger Terminal will gradually resume services from Nansha to Hong Kong from Friday. There will be two inbound and outbound ferries running between the port and China Ferry Terminal in Tsim Sha Tsui every day.

In another development, a “tourist zone” of travel agencies at the CMB Wing Lung Bank Center in Mong Kok reopened on Thursday.

Tourism Industry Council chairperson Wong Mei Lun said its return showed the industry was recovering.

“But it’s not an easy road. There’s limited air capacity, and the rest of the infrastructure isn’t quite ready … we don’t expect to be back by 2024,” she said. “Now we’re seeing people eager to go back to the mainland … our agencies are preparing to travel there.”



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