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Group tour travelers set their sights on the US [Copy link] 中文

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Post time 2008-6-17 15:41:00 |Display all floors
By Li Xiang in Beijing and Maggie Lee in the US (China Daily)
Updated: 2008-06-17 07:29

Beijinger Meng Xuegen's retirement dream is to see the world.

From France to Switzerland to Russia, the 67-year-old has traveled with his wife to every destination on their must-go list except for one: the United States.

But that country too will soon be crossed out.

Setting off tomorrow, Meng is among the first group of Chinese tourists going to the US after the two governments signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) last December, which allows Chinese tourist groups to travel in the US.

The MOU saw the US granted "Approved Destination Status" after years of negotiation, making it the 134th country on China's approved list.

"I am going to the States to see the 'paper tiger'," Meng joked.




"After all, America is the most developed capitalist country in the world, so I want to take a look at it."

For ordinary Chinese citizens, the MOU has eased a decades-old restriction on travel to the US and opened the door of popular US tourist attractions to people like Meng, who have the money, time and desire to travel the world.

"New York is the city I most want to visit. I am also excited about the trip to Pearl Harbor of Hawaii," said Meng, who was born in 1941, the year when the Japanese attacked the US Pacific fleet at the harbor and pushed the Americans into World War II.

In the past, most Chinese who traveled to the US were either students or business people. Under the latest tourism agreement between the two countries, the balance is expected to shift to more leisure travel.

As the agreement takes effect today, travel agencies in both countries expect a new wave of Chinese traveling to the US for leisure.

Chinese travel agencies can now actively advertise and market US leisure tour packages. Under the agreement, they are able to run commercials and organize events such as the US Tour Week to promote products and services.

"It would have been against the law in the past," said Lin Kang, deputy general manager of the outbound department of the China International Travel Service (CITS). The company is one of the authorized tour agencies to operate Chinese tour groups to the US.

Lin said the outbound travel market has had a difficult time this year. Faced with domestic inflation, a falling stock market and the upcoming Olympic Games, many people have been choosing to stay at home rather than travel abroad.


Visitors take in the sights on Capitol Hill in Washington DC on June 9. The US is set to receive more tourists from the Chinese mainland as it has won "Approved Destination Status" under a recent Sino-US memorandum of understanding. [Agencies]
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Post time 2008-6-17 15:46:39 |Display all floors

better go now to the USA

while it's still an independent Nation.

Afterwards it's just gonna be another Chinese province.......wanna bet on this one?

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Post time 2008-6-17 15:49:09 |Display all floors
How much does it cost in yuan?

I know of one woman from Shanghai who spent 50,000 dollars to join a tour group a year ago.

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Post time 2008-6-17 15:52:37 |Display all floors

Reply #2 longzhou's post

Are you Japanese?

They said the same thing about Japan.

Adding the two provinces would only add another 400 million souls to China's population.  That's small change for a nation of 1.3 billion.

Come to think of it, better not.

I like the way the Wenchuan quake was handled.

Adding the 305 million would complicate the picture.

Next time we have a natural disaster in this province the military police will have to carry machine guns.

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Post time 2008-6-17 15:59:44 |Display all floors
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Post time 2008-6-18 01:40:25 |Display all floors
Originally posted by chinadaily at 6/17/2008 02:41 AM
By Li Xiang in Beijing and Maggie Lee in the US (China Daily)
Updated: 2008-06-17 07:29

Beijinger Meng Xuegen's retirement dream is to see the world.

{...}

"I am going to the States to see the 'paper tiger'," Meng joked.


And the paper tigers in Chinatown, Chicago - USA await, with toothy smiles and lots of wonderful things to see, smell, eat, and read.

It will be fun to see the reaction of the tourists seeing the thing that they have been lectured on for many, many years.

The customs officials back home are going to be very, very busy for the next few years. <laughing>
China's Eccentric 'Uncle Laowai' from Chicago, IL

http://blog.chinadaily.com.cn/home.php?mod=space&uid=135031&do=blog&view=me&from=space

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Post time 2008-6-18 02:54:07 |Display all floors

collateral as down payment...

we all hoping that china would allow & make it easy for mainlanders to travel abroad without too much of a hassle...hoping to see some of my friends that able to visit me...instead me bring chocolates to 'em most of the time  

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