Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Spike in Chinese tourists to Laos, but overall total dips

Spike in Chinese tourists to Laos, but overall total dips

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Lao officials expect 4.5 million people will go to Laos during Visit Laos-China Year 2019 – one million of those Chinese. LIU AILUN/XINHUA NEWS AGENCY

Spike in Chinese tourists to Laos, but overall total dips

The total number of domestic and foreign tourists to Laos declined slightly in the first three months of this year compared to the same period last year, but the number of Chinese visitors increased significantly.

More than one million people vacationed in Laos in the first three months of this year, a dip of about 0.5 per cent over last year, while the number of visitors from China increased by 16 per cent, according to the Tourism Development Department, Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism.

Officials expect more than one million Chinese – out of a total of 4.5 million people – to go to Laos during Visit Laos-China Year 2019.

Visitors from Thailand, who make up the bulk of Laos’ foreign tourists, dropped by nine per cent, Vietnamese visitors increased by 20 per cent, and the number coming from the Republic of Korea sank by 32 per cent.

An official in charge who asked not to be named told Vientiane Times he believed visitor numbers were down overall because people were unsure of the quality of tourism services in the country.

The cost of goods and accommodation in some popular provinces was considered to be expensive, although this was something the authorities could not control, he added.

Laos has many enticing tourism products but there are several annoyances, including poor road access to tourist sites, he said.

He attributed the drop in Thai visitors to that country’s own tourism campaign, with locals being encouraged to take holidays at home.

He believed the number of visitors from China and Vietnam had increased because Laos had advertised events for Visit Laos-China Year.

These countries share borders with Laos and many people there have been attracted by the tourism promotion and came to Laos to enjoy the colourful activities on offer this year.

To reach the government’s target of 4.5 million visitors during Visit Laos-China Year, the authorities have been advised to create Chinese language tourism pamphlets.

These pamphlets should include suggestions for culturally sensitive travel in Laos, including the do’s and don’ts when visiting temples and old palaces. Tour guides should also explain aspects of Lao culture to visitors, the official suggested. VIENTIANE TIMES/ANN

MOST VIEWED

  • Second Hungary business forum set for H2

    Cambodia has asked Hungary to provide GSP- (Generalised System of Preferences) Plus facilities for when the Kingdom sheds its least-developed country (LDC) label, as the two countries prepare to hold a second business forum in the second half (H2) of this year to expand trade

  • Thai boxers to join SEA Games’ Kun Khmer event

    The Cambodian SEA Games Organising Committee (CAMSOC) – together with the Kun Khmer International Federation (KKIF) and Khmer Boxing Federation – have achieved a “great success” by including Kun Khmer in the upcoming biennial multi-sports event on its home soil for the first time, said a senior

  • Bullets to bracelets: Siem Reap man makes waste from war wearable

    Jewellery is often made from valuable gemstones like emeralds or diamonds and precious metals like gold or silver, or valueless things like animal horns. But a man in Siem Reap has approached the manufacture of delicate pieces from a different angle. His unique form of

  • 61% of 2022 imports came from just 3 markets

    The three largest exporters to Cambodia – mainland China, Vietnam and Thailand – accounted for 60.94 per cent of the Kingdom’s total merchandise imports last year, at $18.245 billion, which was up 11.99 per cent over 2021, according to the General Department of Customs and Excise. Cambodia’s total imports

  • CPP sets out five primary strategic goals for 2023-28

    The Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) on January 29 concluded its two-day extraordinary congress, setting the party’s priority goals for 2023-2028. The ruling party’s congress was attended by more than 3,000 members from across the Kingdom, including the members of the permanent and central committees,

  • Nearly 50 states join Kun Khmer Federation, all set for training

    In a little over a week, the Kun Khmer International Federation (KKIF) has accepted membership requests from 20 new nations, in addition to the exiting 29. The sudden influx of international recognition stems from the Kingdom’s successful introduction of Kun Khmer to the 32nd Souheast Asian (