China tourists must receive 'star' treatment
By Joy Lee,The China Post
January 18, 2013, 12:23 am TWN
TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The Tourism Bureau announced yesterday it will request travel agencies in Taiwan to schedule mainland Chinese tourists to stay at least one day in a star-rated hotel, starting from April.
The bureau said that also starting from this April they will limit the number and hours mainland Chinese tourists will spend visiting gift shops during their visits.
Some Chinese tourists choose low-price tours to Taiwan, and these tend to come with low-quality trips and lodging, the bureau said. The main goal of this proposal is to increase the quality of group tourism in Taiwan.
According to the Tourism Bureau, it will not strictly enforce the hotel requirement in the beginning. If a travel agency schedules its clients to stay in star-rate hotel, however, this will help with the passing of the trip in the review process.
As for the limitation on visiting gift shops, the bureau said, a tour group scheduled for a six-day trip, for example, can only visit gift shops three times. Groups scheduled for an eight-day trip can only visit gift shops four times. The limitation for each visit is an hour.
The Tourism Bureau said that they have held discussions with travel agencies many times about these new regulations and most agencies have had positive attitudes regarding them.