More tourists visiting China’s secondary cities

Cities like Chongqing, Guilin, Chengdu gaining recognition
More international visitors are taking a stronger interest to venture beyond China’s gateway cities of Shanghai and Beijing into its secondary cities, attracted by unique landscapes and culture as well as growing air links, buyers tell TTG Asia at the China International Travel Mart in Kunming.
“We have experienced at least a 10% increase in business from the US to China this year,” said Shelley Zhang, general manager of New York-based Compass Holidays. “Americans like the culture in China because it is something different and exotic, and [repeat visitors] want to explore other cities. There is increased interest in the secondary cities like Chongqing, Guilin and Chengdu because first-time visitors would have already been to the popular ones like Beijing and Shanghai.”
Similar growth is being seen from Canada, as Connie Lin, deputy general manager of Tian Bao Travel in Ontario, confirms.
“We have seen growing interest to cities such as Kunming and Guilin from repeat visitors who have already been to Shanghai and Beijing. China is viewed as a beautiful and exciting place. The depreciation of the yuan and lots of airlines and capacity between China and Canada had also helped grow the market.”
The extensive domestic networks of Hainan Airlines and Air China have helped her company to develop packages beyond Beijing, to new destinations such as Yunnan, Sichuan, Yangtze River and Xinjiang.
However, Zhang points out that the challenge in promoting secondary cities in China is the lack of English-speaking guides, which may make communication “more challenging”.
TTG Asia