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China's Caissa Nabs Exclusive Paris Olympics Deal

With less than 100 days left until the opening of the 2024 Paris Olympics, Caissa Tourism's sports subsidiary has signed a cooperation intention with official hospitality provider On Location. Under this deal, Caissa will be the exclusive provider of hospitality packages and tourist sightseeing products related to the 2024 Paris Olympics in mainland China and Hong Kong, in addition to providing a number of China marketing and promotional activities. Products are set to go live via Caissa's online channels soon.

In other travel industry news:

The continued rise of Chinese (high-end) brick & mortar agencies

In contrast to the innovations in China's e-commerce ecosystem, it looks like in-person service holds more value than ever. Recently, Zhongxin Tourism has opened more than ten major retail locations within Beijing's major commercial property hubs, including stores in Wanda, Sam's Club, Huaxi LIVE and Wangjing locations. In doing so, they targeted a large number of customers from surrounding shopping districts and high-income communities. Zhongxin has also opened stores inside subway and high-speed rail stations that serve important business districts. It is expected that before the 2024 May 1st holiday, Zhongxin Tourism's Beijing stores will continue to increase to over 80 locations.

Down south in Guangdong province, GZL Travel revealed that it opened a total of 167 retail stores nationwide in 2023. GZL parent company Lingnan Holdings stated during a recent investor relations event laid out its emphasis on offline channels nationwide. Of GZL's total of 167 stores nationwide, 100 stores were opened in Guangdong Province.

Labour Day bookings mania starts

As the domestic travel industry frenzy kicks off to secure train tickets, outbound tourism has also entered a peak booking period. In addition to popular destinations such as Southeast Asia, Japan and South Korea, tourists have also started to explore smaller and less well-known cities abroad. As of April 15, 957 foreign cities' hotels have been booked by Chinese tourists via Qunar.

China's educational tour market to reach ¥242 billion by 2026

According to recent industry data, from 2018 to 2022, China's educational tour market developed rapidly. By 2023, there were around 1,600 educational tour providers; now, there are more than 40,000 such providers nationwide. It is estimated that by 2026, the overall market size of China's study tour industry will reach 242.2 billion yuan ($33.4 billion), with broad market development space. Currently, the industry is still grappling with problems like overpriced and low quality tours, or products where study tour guides are lacking and there isn't much learning happening. As one operator put it: "Everyone is figuring it out as they go along".

San Francisco Tourism Bureau launches China charm offensive

On April 17th, the San Francisco Tourism Bureau held a media briefing in Beijing, with President and CEO Joe D'Alessandro and San Francisco International Airport CFO Kevin Bowman conducing media interviews. They stated that the primary purpose of their trip to China was to promote the resumption of flight services. At the same time, San Francisco has maintained optimistic expectations for the Chinese market, stating that Chinese tourists may once again become San Francisco's largest overseas tourism consumer market in 2024.

GZL and Uzbekistan's Khiva City reach strategic cooperation agreement

On April 16th, 2024, GZL President Zhao Wenzhi and Mayor Davletov Temur of Khiva City signed a strategic cooperation agreement together to promote tourism between the Guangong travel market and Khiva.

Baohua Guolü's Taiyuan-Moscow charter flight resumes May 4th

Shanxi Baohua Guolü Group will resume its Taiyuan-Moscow charter flight route starting from May 4th. The capital of Shanxi, Taiyuan will become one of the few cities in China with direct charter flights to Russia. The flight route will operate twice a week, Wednesdays and Saturdays.

Air China to resume Beijing-Madrid-São Paulo flights

Starting from April 28th, Air China will resume Beijing-Madrid-São Paulo flights, operating twice a week. This will be the longest single-stop flight in the world, with a one-way mileage of 10,926 miles (approximately 17,584 kilometers).

Air China to resume Beijing-Havana route on May 17th

According to Air China and the Embassy of Cuba in China, the direct flight from Beijing to Havana via Madrid will resume on May 17th, operating two flights per week.

Capital Airlines plans to open Hangzhou-Melbourne international route

Capital Airlines plans to open a Hangzhou-Melbourne international route on June 16, 2024. Currently, Capital Airlines operates three intercontinental routes from Hangzhou to Lisbon, Madrid, and Moscow, respectively, with the Hangzhou-Melbourne route being the fourth intercontinental route.

Jiangxi Airlines opens its first international route directly to Jeju Island, South Korea

Jiangxi Airlines opened its direct flight route from Nanchang to Jeju Island on the 16th, the airline's first international route and Jiangxi Province's first direct flight route to South Korea. This route is planned to operate on Tuesdays and Saturdays.

Chengdu-Auckland route resumes operation

At 00:19 on April 17th, Sichuan Airlines flight 3U3811 carrying 270 passengers took off from Chengdu Tianfu International Airport and headed to Auckland, New Zealand's largest city, marking the official resumption of the Chengdu to Auckland route. Chengdu will then be directly connected to three Oceania destinations, including Sydney, Melbourne, and Auckland, with more than 10 direct flights per week.

Thailand receives over 10 million international tourists in 2024 so far, China leads

The latest data from the Tourism Authority of Thailand and the Immigration Bureau showed that the number of international tourists to Thailand had exceeded 10 million from January 1st to April 9th, 2024, an increase of 146% compared to the same period last year. Among them, the number of tourists from mainland China was the highest, at 1.92 million; Malaysia ranked second, with 1.27 million; Russia, South Korea, and India ranked third to fifth.

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