AFTER Chinese tourists injected more than $60 million into the Gold Coast economy last year, Gold Coast Tourism (GCT) is driving initiatives to help businesses embrace the city’s fastest growing tourist market.
A strong 15 per cent growth rate in Chinese visits to the Gold Coast saw GCT appoint a specialist regional manager for the district in June and the organisation has since run two workshops for companies seeking to increase their trade relationships with Chinese industry.
The first event focused on Chinese culture and business relationships and was attended by around 30 staff from a variety of Gold Coast businesses. The second workshop brought together dozens of front-line tourism staff for a workshop on Chinese culture and customer service.
GCT greater China marketing manager John Chan, says developing a prosperous and sustainable market involves more than simply increasing Chinese visitor numbers.
“We need to break down barriers between Gold Coast businesses and our Chinese visitors and tourism distribution partners,” he says.
“Our ability to raise the Gold Coast’s profile in China and attract a larger quantity and quality of Chinese tourists is as much about Gold Coast businesses being able to effectively engage the market as it is about destination brand marketing.
“If Gold Coast Tourism can help foster an awareness and appreciation among local tourism businesses for how best to interact with both Chinese tourism businesses and consumers, then without doubt we have a far greater chance of achieving more lasting and sustainable tourism growth for the Gold Coast.”