Chinese tour operators demand direct flights btn Dar,Hong Kong,Beijing

25Dec 2018
Beatrice Philemon
Dar es Salaam
The Guardian
Chinese tour operators demand direct flights btn Dar,Hong Kong,Beijing

DIRECT flights between Dar es Salaam and leading Chinese cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Hong Kong are important to allow more tourists visit the country.

This ATCL’s ultra-modern Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner plane will start flying to China early 2019.

Speaking in Dar es Salaam yesterday, Tanzania Tourist Board (TTB) Chairman, retired High Court Judge Thomas Mihayo said during a tour of the Asian nation last month, the board managed to sign a memorandum of understanding with Touchroad International Holdings Group to promote destination Tanzania.

Mihayo said the Chinese travel and tour conglomerate has promised to bring 10,000 tourists before the end of 2019 through Ethiopian Airlines because currently there are no direct flights between Beijing and Dar es Salaam.

“We expect to get more tourists from China once Air Tanzania Company Limited starts operating direct flights from major cities in China and Hong Kong to Dar es Salaam,” Mihayo added while pointing out that Touchroad has already pledged to bring 300 tourists between January and February 2019.

“This first batch of Chinese tourists to be brought by Touchroad will visit our famous attractions at Ngorongoro Crater and Serengeti National Park during the three days that they will. TTB will assist Touchroad get 300 hotel rooms and transport services during the batch’s visit. The national airliner is expected to start direct flights to Beijing during the first quarter of 2019 using a Boeing Dreamliner plane.

Touchroad International Holdings Group which is based in Shanghai was established in 2000 and has presence in 30 African countries including Ghana which was its birth place. Apart from travel and tourism, the company also operates in international trade, investment and business development globally.

While in Shanghai, the TTB delegation which also included ATCL officials met with dozens of Chinese travel and tour operators, Tanzanian businessmen and embassy officials to discuss how they can collaborate to market destination Tanzania.

The TTB Chairman said among other things, Touchroad requested the government  to waive visa requirement for Chinese tourists coming to the country as well reduce accommodation costs to lure many visitors afford to meet expenses.

ATCL’s Marketing and Distribution Manager, Edward Mkwabi said during the visit, the national carrier identified and found important relating to Chinese airline travel market. “With ATCL planning to acquire more airlines, we will serve all major Chinese main tourists and trading cities with time,” Mkwabi said.

He pointed out that while in Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Chengdu and Beijing, the TTB delegation also met with different stakeholders including tour operators, travel agents and ticket agents who have shown big interest in exploiting destination Tanzania.

“One of the companies, Travel Sky Company has agreed to start selling our tickets in China to allow travelers easy access to ATCL planes,” he added.




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