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Qingdao announces financial incentives to further the development of the local cruise tourism sector

2018-12-25 10:59

The incentive program is expected to enhance the city's appeal as an international tourism destination

QINGDAO, China, Dec. 25, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Qingdao, a coastal city in eastern China's Shandong province, recently rolled out a program of incentive policies combined with new services, with the aim of accelerating the build out of the China Cruise Tourism Development Experimental Zone in Qingdao and the city's transition into an international tourism destination. On December 11, the Qingdao Municipal Tourism Development Committee and Shibei District People's Government jointly released the Detailed Implementation of Policies in Support of Cruise Tourism in Qingdao. According to the document, Qingdao's municipal government plans to provide incentive subsidies of up to 3 million yuan (approx. US$435,000) to cruise firms that include the city as a port of call in their itineraries and travel agencies that organize sightseeing tours in the city, as well as for outbound travel agencies and ticket agents that operate rented and chartered cruises in Qingdao.

The Qingdao government plans to provide subsidies to the following qualified organizations:

  1. 100,000 to 500,000 yuan (approx. US$14,500- US$72,500) per voyage to cruise firms and travel agencies that qualify as per the recently released document mentioned above;
  2. 100,000 to 400,000 yuan (approx. US$14,500- US$58,000) per voyage for departures from Qingdao;
  3. 500,000 yuan (approx. US$72,500) per every ten voyages to cruise firms that have launched formal operations in Qingdao;
  4. 3 million yuan (approx. US$435,000) for 50 voyages and above.

In addition, the Shibei District government, the Qingdao International Cruise Port Services Administration and Qingdao Port Group have jointly issued a notice entitled "Ways to Encourage the Organization of Cruise Passenger Sources," which prescribes that outbound travel agencies and ticket agents that rent or charter cruise ships with the base of operations in Qingdao and succeed in boarding 5,000 or more passengers per year who then travel abroad would be entitled to a subsidy of 200 yuan (approx. US$29) per passenger.

The cruise sector is seen as one with huge revenue potential for the city and its economy. As a key port city in northern China and an open coastal city, Qingdao boasts rich tourism resources, a favorable climate and an excellent deep-water port. In addition, Qingdao's geographical advantages have been further highlighted by its multiple international exchanges. Various factors have created a golden opportunity for Qingdao to develop its cruise tourism industry.

Qingdao has unrivalled advantages over other Chinese port cities. Citing a few examples, Qingdao's docking facilities for cruise ships are located in proximity to the city's railway station and downtown area. The city is widely recognized in the travel sector for having one of the world's most unique urban coastlines, an element that is a major enticement for cruise passengers who would be attracted to the city's premium onshore tours in addition to the well-known Qingdao beer and sailing tours, delivering a comprehensive and unique travel experience. With the ability to draw in an increasing number of tourists from other parts of Shandong province as well as nearby Beijing, Henan and Shanxi provinces combined with the rollout of the Jinan-Qingdao and Qingdao-Lianyungang high-speed railways, the local cruise market is poised to have a promising future.

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the launch of China's reform and opening up policy. Over the past 40 years, the Chinese tourism sector has grown rapidly and established a network that overlaps with several related sectors. Qingdao has always been at the forefront in terms of discovering new trends early and taking actions to attract tourists from areas of the world not yet familiar with China. Many domestic and international tourists have been impressed by a number of famous attractions in and around the city, among them, Laoshan, the highest coastal mountain in China, and Badaguan, a historical area dotted with opulent mansions, garden-like villas and European-style buildings, in addition to the city's distinctive urban landscape and unique culture that combines oriental and western elements while successfully integrating the ancient and with the modern. The city has also increased its appeal as a travel destination by hosting several internationally recognized sailing competitions, most notably, the Qingdao Olympic Sailing Competition, as well as the Qingdao International Beer Festival.

Qingdao has continued to make strides in the tourism sector in 2018, with a focus on diversifying its new tourism offerings and new forms of enterprise through the implementation of the "Tourism Plus" strategy. In April, Qingdao Metro Line 11, considered by many as one that delivers one of the most aesthetically pleasing rides due to breathtaking views of the rocky mountains visible from its windows while the train is in transit, started operations. In June, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Summit was successfully held in Qingdao, at which leaders from different countries gave high praise to Qingdao, further enhancing the city as destination of choice for conventions and expos. In December, Qingdao formally kicked off the plan to provide financial incentives to cruise operators.

Today, driven by a wide range of high-quality facilities and offerings, Qingdao, with its inherent tourism resources, has become a more dynamic, fashionable, beautiful and fascinating travel destination, drawing an ever growing number of Chinese and international visitors.

Cision View original content:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/qingdao-announces-financial-incentives-to-further-the-development-of-the-local-cruise-tourism-sector-300770683.html

Source: The Qingdao Municipal Tourism Development Committee
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