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The city that's not forbidden, just avoided[2]- Chinadaily.com.cn [Copy link] 中文

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Post time 2014-5-17 09:10:19 |Display all floors
The number of foreign nationals traveling to China has declined in recent years, with air pollution one of the key causes. ZOU HONG/ CHINA DAILY 





No longer exotic

In addition to the other factors, familiarity has, to some extent, bred contempt. China is no longer as exotic a destination as it once was, and Beijing's major tourist attractions haven't really changed in recent years - 75 p ...

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Post time 2014-5-17 09:10:35 |Display all floors
I was a member of two organized tour groups which included stops in Beijing.  My thoughts would include the lack of quality tour guides who act as if they are doing you a favor by taking your from place to place.  It was always hurry up and wait, where's the bus?  Many times the tour guides had very limited knowledge of where they were taking you, including the Great Wall, Tiananmen, Forbidden City, etc.  
Spending close to an hour at Tiananmen Square was probably one of the most boring things in my life.
Add to this the constant "shopping opportunities" a tourist is shuffled to in order for the tour guide to make a commission from sales off of terribly over-priced items that most tourists have no desire to buy.
Assistance from the tour guides is almost nil.  They mechanically route groups from one tourist attraction to shopping, to another tourist attraction to shopping.
Needless to say, word of mouth travels quickly among people who have been on these tours to their friends at home.  The tourism business in China has changed little since it was first formed.  It is monotonous, filled with unqualified tour guides and as a whole a terrible introduction to such a fascinating country.  It was so bad on one tour, in Shanghai our local tour guide was preaching away, was rude, glorifying his son, that we simply told the national tour guide, if the local tour guide is still with us in the morning, we will not continue the tour.  I assume he was not fired for his inability, but pushed off on another unwary group of tourists.
People spend their hard earned money to come to China, either as a group or alone.  If they cannot get a decent return for their money, they won't return and the word of mouth at home will affect so many as far as coming to China to visit.

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Post time 2014-5-23 20:52:39 |Display all floors
I went to Beijing recently and my local Chinese tour guide was excellent, very smart, intelligent, funny and full of knowledge. Yes, there are some bad ones, like in any country, but I think overall Chinese is improving greatly. Food was excellent, and yes there was a lot of shopping but it was also interesting, you didn't have to buy, and it's not like Thailand or Indonesia where they don't leave you alone if you don't want to buy. I think the pollution is the main problem, yes there are some development problems but they are growing and improving.

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