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Mainland Tourists, Avoiding Hong Kong, Head to Macau Instead

Posted: 10/7/2014 9:16 am

Tourists walk past a luxury store in Hong Kong

The number of mainland tourists to Macau swelled to 1.2 million in the first four days of the week-long national holiday, surpassing the figures recorded last year as people stay away from Hong Kong as streets remain blocked with protesters.

On October 3, more than 300,000 visitors entered Macau, more than double last year’s 115,800 tourists on the second day of the week-long holiday, according to figures released by Zhuhai Exit and Entry Frontier Inspection Station and Macau Government Tourism Bureau.

Meanwhile there were 157,212 Mainlanders heading to Hong Kong on October 1, a 2 percent decline compared with a year ago, Wall Street Journal reported. China has temporarily suspended visas for tour groups heading to the city because of the unrest.

Anti-occupy protesters beat a protester in Mongkok.

According to figures released by the Hong Kong Immigration Department, 165,685 visitors from mainland China arrived in the city on the second day of the national holiday, a 70 percent decline from last year. It’s a “very low percentage during the Golden Week,” wrote Shenzhen Evening News on October 4.

Pro-Beijing Chinese newspaper Ta Kung Pao said the protests have brought instability and financial losses to the city. ANT bank estimated the protests cost the city HK$2.2 billion of losses in retail, the newspaper reported.

Photos: Alex Ogle/AFP/Getty ImagesTyrone Siu/Reuters



Foreign Tourist Dives Into Nanjing Lake to Save Suicidal Woman [UPDATED]

Posted: 08/18/2014 2:25 pm

nanjing suicide rescue lake foreignerA Nanjing woman who tried to commit suicide by jumping into a lake has been saved by a foreign tourist who happened to be passing by on a tour boat, reports The incident occurred at around 2pm on August 17 on the east side of Fuzi Temple at Pingjiang Bridge.

The woman plunged into the river just a tour boat was passing by. The foreigner, on board the boat, noticed the woman in the water and dove in to save her. The woman’s boyfriend was also on scene and helped in the rescue effort.

Fortunately the woman appears to be okay.nanjing suicide rescue lake foreignernanjing suicide rescue lake foreigner

UPDATED 11:40am August 19: Here’s a video taken at the scene:


Photos: DQ Daily


Conde Nast Names Beijing One of the World’s Most Unfriendly Cities

Posted: 08/13/2014 4:31 pm

forbidden city crowdsConde Nast Traveler has recently published the results of a poll that shows Beijing is considered among the world’s most unfriendly cities according to tourists.

The term “unfriendly” isn’t necessarily a reflection of a city’s residents. Instead, it’s a judgment on how accessible and accommodating a city is towards its international tourists. For example, Johannesburg was ranked first because of its high crime rate and “danger of traveling alone”.

Beijing ranks at number six on the list, apparently because of its “terrible pollution” and “dirty streets” that detract from its beautiful attractions. With that, China Daily issued the following post:

worlds unfriendliest cities

Is Beijing the world’s most unfriendly city?
US travel magazine Conde Nast Traveler has published a list of the world’s most unfriendly cities for 2014 upon which Beijing is ranked at number six. The magazine thinks that environmental pollution, traffic congestion and overcrowding are the main reasons for being on the list. The top city on the list is Johannesburg, and there are three well-known romantic French cities on the list: Paris (#4), Marsailles (#4), and Cannes (#2).

As China’s capital, Beijing certainly has its problems. Beijing does have bad air pollution, congested streets and too many people, so it can’t dispute these facts. The contention seems to be over the word “unfriendly”.  Netizens in China, of course, have sounded off over the news:

I don’t understand the meaning of the word “unfriendly”. [tragic.emo]

This list was determined by the Americans themselves, no wonder there aren’t any of their own US cities on this list.

Let’s see you make New York, Los Angeles, and Washington not be congested with traffic!

There really aren’t any US cities listed.

In truth, Beijingers fear important foreigners!! Especially important people who are black!! It’s just that the foreign media doesn’t know this.

Actually, (they) treat foreigners very well.

I’ve never been to Beijing; I support this.

It seems as though this isn’t wrong. In loving our country, we must look at all the facts.

Take a hike, Beijing!

Or, it may be time to accept that Beijing is a terrible place to find yourself at the end of a journey. In May, a survey of 54,000 people by TripAdvisor determined that Beijing is the second-worst travel destination in the world, topped only by Moscow.

The survey ranked cities by the quality of taxi services provided, the helpfulness of locals, and, yes, the friendliness of its residents.

Photo: Jez and Jennie’s


Pictures: Tour Bus Falls Off Cliff in Tibet in Multi-Vehicle Crash [UPDATED]

Posted: 08/9/2014 10:51 pm

tibet tour bus crashA tour bus carrying over 40 Chinese tourists has plummeted off a cliff in a multi-vehicle accident on a highway in Tibet, reports CCTV News.

The traffic collision occurred this afternoon after three o’clock on national highway #318 near Lhasa towards Shigatse in Nyemo County. Preliminary reports say a passenger bus, an off-road or sport utility vehicle, and a pick-up were all involved in the three-vehicle collision. As a result, the tour bus carrying over 40 passengers plummeted off a cliff estimated at 10 meters high.

The specific number of casualties is currently unknown, although preliminary reports indicate that many have died and more are injured. The passengers are said to all be Chinese nationals.

Rescue operations are underway.

tibet tour bus crash

UPDATE 1:04am August 10: Here are more pictures from the scene.

tibet tour bus crashtibet tour bus crashtibet tour bus crashtibet tour bus crashtibet tour bus crash

Photo: Yangcheng Evening Report, People’s Daily


Six Dead as Tour Bus Flips in Chongqing

Posted: 07/6/2014 10:11 pm

chongqing bus overturns tourist traffic accident[Warning: this post contains graphic images which may upset some readers]

Six people died when a sightseeing bus overturned in the mountains of Chongqing. A total of 36 people were injured in the incident, with five in serious condition.

RELATED: Arson Suspected in Hangzhou Bus Fire

The accident at 6:35pm on July 5th in Fuling, on the outskirts of Chongqing. The bus was coming down from Xiannu Mountain and heading towards the city. The bus was traveling so fast that when it flipped, it slid on its roof for another 200 meters.

chongqing bus overturns tourist traffic accident

The bus involved in the incident belongs to the Chongqing New World Public Transportation Company, but it was rented to the Chongqing Beautiful Journey Trip Company. It was carrying 51 people when it overturned.

chongqing bus overturns tourist traffic accidentchongqing bus overturns tourist traffic accidentchongqing bus overturns tourist traffic accidentchongqing bus overturns tourist traffic accidentchongqing bus overturns tourist traffic accidentchongqing bus overturns tourist traffic accident

Photos: People’s Daily (2),


Tourists Throw Slippers At Lychee Trees To Get Free Fruit In Shenzhen

Posted: 06/12/2014 7:59 pm

As a native of the Pearl River Delta, you take things for what they are. Sure, you live with the combined menace of avian flu and naked officials, but you also enjoy fresh air and the convenience of soon-to-be-arriving FamilyMart stores.

Let’s not mince words: as a Pearl River Delta resident, you can appreciate the very best thing about the PRD: lychee fruit—the proverbial cherry on top of the sundae with Chinese characteristics. However, the lifestyle you take for granted is what makes tourists to Shenzhen lose all semblance of civility.

Apparently, some people can’t go to the park except as a means to exploit its natural resources. On June 10, tourists to Shenzhen’s Lychee Park lost their shiznit over the fact that lychee are being grown on a tree and are free—FREE!—for the taking.

As People’s Daily reports, tourists employ a variety of creative (read: violent) methods to harvest the lychee fruit: throwing plastic bottles, throwing slippers, and shaking the tree. And then there’s climbing the lychee tree itself, thus rendering hobbies that require buying stuff like frisbees and kites redundant from their lack of harvested fruit.

At this rate, thongs are never coming to China.

lychee picking tourists shenzhenlychee picking tourists shenzhenlychee picking touristslychee picking tourists shenzhen

Photos: People’s Daily



Old Guangzhou couple arrested after fight near Capitol Hill

Posted: 09/6/2013 4:46 pm

A Guangzhou couple in their 60s had to spend a night in a jail cell after they got into a fight over a photograph pose near Washington’s Capitol Hill on Aug. 30, Phoenix News reports.

The couple were fulfilling a lifelong dream by travelling to the United states for a holiday. Although charges were not pressed against them, the experience of having to spend a night locked up with drug dealers and prostitutes turned their dream very much into a nightmare.

After the couple couldn’t agree over where to stand while posing for a photograph, the wife hit her husband over the head with her handbag. He retaliated with his bag and they got into a loud argument in a language the locals couldn’t understand. Around 10 policemen were called over to subdue them.

According to their tour guide, surnamed Du, the couple were kept in separate cells and wept after being released the next day.

This is the latest in a long line of incidents that has given tourists from the Chinese mainland a bad name. In May this year, former Guangdong Party Secretary Wang Yang said:

“They speak loudly in public, carve characters on tourist attractions, cross the road when the traffic lights are still red, spit anywhere and [carry out] some other uncivilised behaviour. It damages the image of the Chinese people and has a very bad impact.”

A proposal was issued by the China International Travel Service on behalf of the industry on Aug 1, calling for good manners for tourists and tour guides, according to China Daily.


Crackdown on visas for locals could make crossing into Macau easier for laowai

Posted: 06/27/2012 2:51 pm

Gongbei Border Control

You might be able to speed through Gongbei Port and into Macau soon, as Guangdong appears to be tightening visa requirements for Chinese tourists.

A report from the Chinese-language Macau Daily News cited unnamed sources saying local officials in neighbouring Guangdong could limit the number of Macau visas issued for locals, coupled with a limit on overseas spending on credit cards. Despite its reunification with China in 1999, Macau is still considered “overseas”.

Major Hong Kong-listed Casino operators Sands China, Galaxy, MGM China and Wynn Macau saw shares tank on the news on Tuesday, but analysts are split on the speculation.

From Bloomberg:

“Recent weakness in Macau gaming revenue and visitation growth could be partially explained by the visa restrictions and reduction in China UnionPay limits highlighted by the Macau Daily,” Cameron McKnight, an analyst at Wells Fargo & Co., said in a June 25 research note.

“The report on visa tightening is a bit speculative,” said Grant Govertsen, a Macau-based analyst at Union Gaming Group. “We haven’t seen anything so far to convince us this is happening.”

While Reuters reports:

“There has been no restriction of visas,” said Gabriel Chan, analyst at Credit Suisse in Hong Kong

Chan said new measures recently put in place should actually should encourage the flow of visitors by making it easier for residents to apply for a visa and lengthening the opening hours of the border gate that connects Macau to the mainland.

The numbers Macau are dealing with are huge, and could affect the gambling-heavy SAR.
From Bloomberg:

Macau casino gambling revenue rose 7.3 percent in May, the slowest pace since July 2009.

Reuters said:

About 25 million visitors from Greater China flocked to the specially administered region in 2011 – the only place in China where nationals can legally gamble at casinos – making up about 90 percent of total visitors.

Long queues at the Gongbei border between Zhuhai and Macau are an all too often occurrence as foreigners bemoan the sheer volume of people crowding into the border facility.  Unlike at Lo Wu/Luohu Port connecting Shenzhen with Hong Kong, Gongbei Port often doesn’t differentiate between foreigners and locals, resulting in long queues all around.

The last time local entry into Macau was tightened was back in 2008.


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