UK aims to become China's most welcoming destination

03 December 2013 by
UK aims to become China's most welcoming destination

Chinese visitors to the UK should be made to feel more welcome in the future as the result of a new initiative announced by Maria Miller, secretary of state for culture, media and sport.

The China Welcome campaign run by VisitBritain will improve the way the UK travel industry caters to the needs of Chinese travellers.

Due to be launched in spring 2014, VisitBritain will help hotels and other businesses improve their cultural awareness of the Chinese and encourage the training of Mandrarin-speaking staff. Translated website and visitor literature will also be encouraged.

Hilton Worldwide, which is already attracting a significant number of Chinese guests through its Huanying programme, has become the first hotel company to sign up to the campaign.

Miller called on British businesses to get involved in the campaign whilst accompanying Prime Minister David Cameron on a three-day visit to China.

"The new China Welcome initiative shows how serious we are about making sure Britain is ahead of the competition when it comes to attracting Chinese businesses and tourists," she said. "We are determined to encourage more Chinese people come to our shores, enjoy our culture, heritage, food, sport, shopping, countryside and music and invest in our country."

Sandie Dawe, chief executive of VisitBritain, added: "In the past 12 months China has become the largest tourism source market in the world, worth $102b (£62b). We want to make sure that Britain competes effectively for this market, helping the industry to develop products and services that appeal to Chinese visitors and making sure that the message of the GREAT British welcome is widely promoted."

Miller also announced that Birmingham Airport and Chinese tour operator CAISSA are working together to increase the number of Chinese visitors travelling to the UK through Birmingham Airport.

VisitBritain undertakes largest China mission to date >>

Visa applications to be relaxed for Chinese visitors >>

Boost in spending by Chinese visitors to UK >>

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