I kind of like Taiwan the way it is. Once KMT gets into power again things will change.
“Not enough mainlanders last year,” he said. “Yes, we had Thais, Filipinos and Malaysians and we welcome them. But they do not spend enough. Their countries are poorer than China. We need the heavy spending of mainland tour groups.”
“The figures for 2018 are not as good as they look,” said Robin Lee, a travel consultant in Taipei. “The government gave subsidies to travel agencies to make tours cheaper for Southeast Asians. There was a political imperative to keep the numbers up. The average income in these countries is lower than in China, so their people spend less.”
They are not doing badly attracting Asian tourists. Westerners are too far away mostly and Muslims want to go to more Muslim friendly places .
It’s just that there’s so many cashed up Chinese and they are on Taiwan’s doorstep. 7 million went on overseas holiday during CNY alone.
Most of the non Chinese aren’t too interested in the crappy package tours and not impressed with places Like sun moon lake (Vietnam business guy told me directly ). They do like Alishan and Hehuanshan though !
That is something I do not get. They insist that the Mainlanders are big spenders…but only allow them to shop at designated shopping stops. Their trips are highly controlled and they stay in hotels and travel in buses owned by Chinese corporations under local disguises, so the money goes back to China. People here get all exited when a few crumbs are thrown in as «crowds pour» into nightmarkets…but for how long?
How does a Mainland person shopping at a Taiwan LV store help that much? Don’t say trickle down or taxes. And why would they buy these big ticket items here if they are loaded? Wouldn’t they prefer that straight from Paris? Do the bus hordes shop at the fancy local brand glass or ceramic stores in Taiwan?
The hordes of European tourists go to Thailand and Indonesia because they are cheap. If Taiwan wants to compete in cheap…it would be the same disaster as it has been competing with China in cheap manufacturing. The race to the bottom hurts the bottom line, social structure and economy overall.
Taiwan has a lot to offer to high end tourists. It is liked by Japanese and Singapore tourists for its safety and acceptance. As a tourist destination it has a lot of potential but needs better marketing and a wider scope. And with authorities having a political agenda, and mainly pushing the glorious sons of Dragon agenda, this is simply not happening.