The Nanfang / Blog

New Zealand Processes 1,000 Visa Applications from Chinese People Each Day

Posted: 01/7/2015 9:54 am

new zealandHome to the indigenous Maori people, the Kiwi bird and the Lord of the Rings movies, the face of New Zealand is set to change with the news that Chinese people top the list of people wanting to go to the island nation.

“No matter if it is tourists, exchange students, or applicants looking to reside here, China is one of the main sources of new arrivals in New Zealand,” said Bruce Ballast, the deputy director of visas for Asia.

Ballast goes on to explain the significant role China plays in New Zealand immigration:

Without a doubt, China is the country we focus on the most at the present time in the immigrantion office. For the past three years, Chinese application to immigrate to New Zealand have increased by 80%, and continues to quickly grow at a 30% annual rate.

Ballast also had some statistics to share:

In 2013, the New Zealand department of immigration processed 304,475 applications from China. This means that without counting our days off, our offices processed Chinese applications at a rate of about a thousand visa applications a day.

Resources have been specifically arranged just take care of this demand. Out of a staff of 1,400 for which 800 personnel are allocated for visa processing, 180 workers are dedicated to processing Chinese applications.

Photo: Baidu Images


Land of Smiles Turns to Frowns After More Misbehaving Chinese Tourists at Historic Bangkok Site

Posted: 12/17/2014 3:35 pm

Thailand, the “land of smiles”, can be forgiven for wearing a frown these days.

The country was among the first to open its borders widely to tourists from Mainland China by rescinding the need to apply for a visa in advance. These days, PRC passport holders only need show up at a Thai airport and pay 1,000 Thai baht for a visa on arrival.

While this ease of access has no doubt boosted the country’s economy among other benefits, it’s also brought some problems. Just this week, a Chinese couple tossed scalding-hot water onto an Air Asia flight attendant on a flight from Bangkok to Nanjing, and now the capital city received some rough treatment at one of it’s most famous tourist attractions: the Grand Palace.

Photos circulated on Twitter this past weekend showing the barriers guarding the palace’s wall painting, which is the longest of its kind in the world, toppled. iFeng reports the barriers were pushed down on Saturday by Chinese tourists, who refused to own up to it until they were told the incident was caught on surveillance camera. Fortunately the barriers didn’t damage the elaborate painting.

The original Twitter post is below.


There’s no doubt most Chinese tourists behave themselves admirably while on holiday, and Thailand is seeing the benefits of more open borders. But after the events this week, the country can be excused for failing to wear its frown upside down.

h/t Shanghaiist



State-Run Media Calls Chinese Air Asia Passengers “Barbarians”, Threatens Punishment

Posted: 12/15/2014 4:40 pm

thai airline stewardess instant noodle bomb threatA couple of Chinese passengers that threw hot water on a flight attendant and threatened to blow up an Air Asia plane will be “severely punished” by Chinese authorities, according to state run media, which branded the passengers “barbarians”.

The Nanfang was first to report the story on Friday, when the discount carrier’s plane was forced to return to the Thai capital because of a couple of unruly Chinese passengers:

Then in flight, the woman bought a bowl of instant noodles from the flight attendants and asked for boiling water. When she got it, she splashed it on the flight attendant.

During the fracas that followed, the man threatened to blow up the plane as his girlfriend threatened to kill herself. The couple finally calmed down once other passengers became involved.

After arriving back in Bangkok, police entered the plane and took the couple away.

There were actually four passengers singled out for causing trouble, and they paid a fine of 50,000 baht (RMB 10,000) to the airline. All four are now being investigated by the Chinese tourism agency.

The agency was unclear what punishment the tourists could face for the incident. However, a statement released by the agency suggested the travel agency used by the tourists could be held accountable for failing to teach them proper behavior. Furthermore, the tourists themselves could be blacklisted.

thai airline stewardess instant noodle bomb threatThere have been several other incidents of mainland Chinese getting into violent confrontations on international flights this year.

In March, a video was taken of a fight between Chinese passengers when one’s luggage touched the other passenger’s foot. On a flight from Thailand to Beijing this past April, a fight broke out between three Chinese passengers over loud eating sounds in which cutlery was used as weapons.

In September during a flight from Zurich, Switzerland to Beijing, an airliner had to return to the Swiss capital when a fight between two Chinese nationals occurred over the positioning of a seat rest. Later that month, a fight between two Chinese passengers over an empty seat at the back happened on a flight to Shanghai.

thai airline stewardess instant noodle bomb threat

Here’s a video of the incident on Air Asia. Fellow Chinese passengers can be heard complaining he has “lost face”:

Photos: opsteel, my drivers


100 Million Chinese Tourists Head Abroad in 2014, a New Record

Posted: 12/8/2014 9:30 am

national tourism administration

Over 100 million mainland Chinese tourists are expected to have traveled internationally in 2014, according to the National Tourism Administration. This number beats the previous record set in 2013.

The number is somewhat misleading, as more than 60 percent of travel was to the special administrative regions of Hong Kong and Macau as well as the self-governed island of Taiwan.

Other popular destinations were South Korea, Thailand, Japan, USA, Vietnam, and Singapore.

Nearly 90 percent of all travel was within Asia, while 3.5 percent went to Europe, 3 percent to Africa, and 2.7 percent to the Americas. The countries with the biggest increase in Chinese tourists were Japan and South Korea. Combined, the two countries saw an increase in Chinese tourism of almost 40 percent.

The new travel record stands in stark contrast to China’s international travel from just over a decade and a half ago. In 1998, there were only 8.43 million trips made beyond China’s national boundaries.

Photo: People’s Daily Online


Disney Unveils Plans for Massive Shanghai Theme Park

Posted: 11/17/2014 1:00 pm

shanghai disneyworldSet to open next year, Shanghai Disney Resort has unveiled its plans for an enormous entertainment complex next to a manmade lake, reported Xinhua.

Details released at the 2014 China International Tourism Trade Fair, indicated that the theme park will have two main hotels, one of which will feature a “Toy Story” theme.

shanghai disneyworldShanghai’s Disney Resort will be the sixth in the world, and will include the largest castle to date. Of the six entertainment sectors, one will have a “Pirates of the Caribbean” theme, while another will have Chinese characteristics and be called the “12 Friends Park”.

In other Disney developments, Hong Kong Disney World recently announced admission prices will increase from HKD $450 to $499.

More concept photos of the new Shanghai Disney Resort are shown below:

shanghai disneyworldshanghai disneyworldshanghai disneyworldshanghai disneyworldPhotos: Xinhua, Hexun


Fewer Tourists Coming to China, Pollution Cited as a Major Concern

Posted: 10/22/2014 3:30 pm

great wall smog air pollutionChina’s air pollution is the top reason why fewer tourists are coming to China, according to a national tourism body. Dai Bin, director of China Tourism Research Institution, hopes to waive visa requirements in order to make it easier for people to visit the country, but tackling pollution may take a lot longer to resolve.

In 2013, 129 million tourists visited China, a year-on-year drop of 2.51 percent. There were 56 million overnight visitors last year, also down 3.53 percent. China has the fourth-highest number of tourists in the world after France, the USA and Spain.

China’s tourist numbers are still huge partly because it considers visitors from Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan as part of the figures. Hong Kong sends the most tourists to the country (59.56 percent), Macau is second at 16.07 percent, with Taiwan following at 4 percent.

Tourists that come from “foreign” countries makes up 20.37 percent of the annual total, or only 26.3 million tourists in 2013. South Korea, Japan, Russia and the USA send the most visitors.


Photo: Xinhuanet


China Offering Tours to Space for Low Low Price of RMB 500k

Posted: 10/8/2014 5:37 pm

space tourism china

Space tourism will soon be an option for vacationers in China.

Passengers will be able to take a five hour flight 40,000 meters above ground, reports Caijing. There, passengers will be able to see the full 1,000 kilometer arc of the Earth, a sunset and sunrise from space, and experience weightlessness — all for the bargain basement price of RMB 500,000 (about $81,400).

The speakers at the space conference, where the new vacation package was announced, said space travel is safe and stable, and will one day be affordable for tourists. While demand for the trips is high, it’s unclear when tickets will be sold:

We have not formally publicized our plan, nor sold any tickets yet. For this reason, we are not taking any orders for the time being. As of now, we are only answering questions for people making preliminary reports.

Whenever sales do begin, you can bet your Instagram feed will be filled with selfies from space.

Photo: focus.21cn


Best Place to Go This National Holiday? Your Living Room

Posted: 10/1/2014 6:49 pm

people mountain people sea lots of people tourismMaybe you’ve let this National Day holiday creep up on you, and suddenly you’ve got seven full days off but don’t know where to go.

Relax. The best place to spend your time off may very well be in your own home.

Notwithstanding the fact that expat homes come in a variety of shapes and sizes, your home has one defining aspect that differentiates it from the traveling and tourism that will take place during this National Day Golden Week: your home isn’t crowded with hundreds of thousands of people.

If you decided to attend the two minute, seven second flag raising ceremony this morning in Tiananmen Square, you would have shared this unique experience in the company of 120,000 other spectators:

people mountain people sea lots of people tourism tiananmenIf, during this holiday, you’d like to take the subway in Zhengzhou, Henan, you’ll be greeted with this line-up that stretches down the road:

people mountain people sea lots of people tourism zhengzhou subway lineupIf you take the subway in Guangzhou, you may encounter a lineup like this:

people mountain people sea lots of people subway guangzhouIf you’re thinking about driving out of the city, you may experience some slight congestion:

people mountain people sea lots of people tourismMotorists have reported it’s taking as long as three hours and 15 minutes just to get out of Beijing. While in Shenzhen, there is currently a six kilometre traffic jam on the Humen Highway. Apparently cars on the highway to Shantou haven’t moved in an hour.

Traffic is so slow in Nanjing drivers can hop out and play a game of badminton while they wait for cars to start moving.

people mountain people sea lots of people trafficChina has many beautiful locations and tourist attractions. The problem is, everyone visits them at the same time. These photos offer an idea of just how bad it gets:

people mountain people sea lots of people tourismpeople mountain people sea lots of people tourismpeople mountain people sea lots of people tourismpeople mountain people sea lots of people tourismpeople mountain people sea lots of people tourism

If you’re enjoying your National Day holidays at home, keep enjoying them.

Photos: Information Times, Xinhua, China Network Television, Asia TodayMany Things that Even Guangzhou Residents Don’t Know, CCTV


[Photos] Famous Guilin Tourist Landmark Engulfed in Flames

Posted: 10/1/2014 1:34 pm

guilin pagoda on fire sun and moon tourist attraction

Guilin’s famous Sun and Moon Pagodas caught on fire at 7:57 this morning, on the same day a national holiday kicks off that would have seen thousands of visitors. A tall plume of black smoke was seen billowing from one of its structures.

The Sun and Moon Pagodas were originally based on Tang dynasty designs, but were rebuilt in 2001. As a tourist attraction, it is famous for its night time display of gold and silver lights.

guilin pagoda on fire sun and moon tourist attraction

Firefighters have already extinguished the fire, and damage to the tourist attraction is still being assessed. A preliminary investigation says the fire was caused by an electrical problem involving the artificial lanterns used at night.

Several photographs show the tourist attraction on fire:

guilin pagoda on fire sun and moon tourist attractionguilin pagoda on fire sun and moon tourist attractionguilin pagoda on fire sun and moon tourist attractionguilin pagoda on fire sun and moon tourist attractionFor comparison, here’s what the Sun and Moon Pagodas usually looks like:

sun and moon pagoda guilinsun and moon pagoda guilinPhotos: Yangtse Evening Report, baohuasi, yododod


Visiting Three Gorges Is Free… Unless You’re a Foreigner

Posted: 09/26/2014 10:04 am

three gorges attraction touristIf you ever wondered if there is a price for not being Chinese in China, you can now pay the difference with your wallet.

Starting from September 25, the Three Gorges Scenic Area will be completely free for Chinese, but non-Chinese visitors will have to pay an admission fee of RMB 105 (around $17).

No explanation for the change was given by the China Yangtze Three Gorges Associated Company and the local government of Yichang when they made the announcement on September 24.

The new policy isn’t just a “thank you” shout out for people lucky enough to hold lifetime membership to the People’s Republic of China. It also waives the fee for compatriots in Hong Kong, Macau, and anybody of Chinese ethnicity living anywhere.

three gorges china news networkFor those people unwilling to pay the price of being a foreigner, the following is what you’ll be missing out on at the Three Gorges Scenic Area:

three gorges attraction touristthree gorges attraction tourist

Non-Chinese tourists, you’ll just have to decide if paying RMB 105 for admission is worth it.

Photos: China News Network, China News Network screengrab

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