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Beijing snipes Shanghai's Expo tourists

2010. 27 January

Li Yang
( The government's tourism authorities said Monday that they hope to snipe tourists from the World Expo 2010 in Shanghai.

The Beijing Tourism Administration (BJTA) announced its slogan, "Visiting Shanghai Expo, Traveling Beijing" in the Beijing People's Congress, promoting Beijing tourism at the Shanghai Expo.

They plan to establish some preferential policies for travelers and agencies to make Beijing part of their visit and establish regular tourist routes between Beijing and Shanghai.

"The details about those policies and routes haven't been worked out," said a BJTA officer. "Only one idea has been released that we will cooperate with Shanghai to exchange tourists through some special high-speed trains between the two cities during the World Expo."

Xu Bin, staff at the China Youth Tours Service (CYTS), a leading tourist agency in China, told the Global Times that it will not be easy to persuade domestic visitors to travel from Shanghai to Beijing. "Usually Beijing and Shanghai are two separate travel destinations, and there have been few people who want to visit the two cities within a short time," said Xu. "But we will cooperate with the BJTA if they want us to."

Another CYTS staff member, surnamed Wang, told the Global Times that the BJTA's idea is not new because routes for foreign tourists involving Beijing and Shanghai have been run for ages.

"It isn't necessary to promote Beijing during the World Expo because Beijing is usually more attractive than Shanghai for most foreign visitors for tourism," she said. "I think it's only a stunt." It has been estimated that over 70 million people will make the trip to visit the World Expo. Only 3.5 million are expected to be foreigners with 56.5 million Chinese visitors from outside Shanghai.

Besides the exhibitions in the Shanghai Expo, the BJTA will organize a 1.8 kilometer-long parade at the Expo site to show Beijing's culture and historical sites.