Montreal-Bei­jing di­rect flight al­ready show­ing big im­pact

China Daily (Canada) - - FRONT PAGE - By NA LI in Toronto re­nali@chi­nadai­

Since it was launched on Sept 29, the first di­rect flight link­ing Bei­jing and Montreal has al­ready boosted tourism ex­change be­tween the two ci­ties.

The Bei­jing High-Level Tourism Resources Show­case hosted by Bei­jing Mu­nic­i­pal Com­mis­sion of Tourism De­vel­op­ment (BMCTD) was held in Montreal on Oct 16. Of­fi­cials from the Que­bec and Montreal tourist ad­min­is­tra­tions and rep­re­sen­ta­tives from lo­cal travel agen­cies, tourist in­sti­tu­tions and tourist rep­re­sen­ta­tives at­tended.

The show­case pre­sented cus­tom­ized tour pack­ages cre­ated by the com­mis­sion in Bei­jing, with ti­tles such as Tra­di­tional Chi­nese Medicine, Sports Events, Fes­ti­vals and Ex­hi­bi­tions, the Cre­ative Industry or Cul­tural Per­for­mances.

“We try to help tourists in North Amer­ica have a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing of Bei­jing and en­large the tourism mar­ket,” said Zhang Jun, di­rec­tor of BMCTD. “It will pro­vide op­por­tu­ni­ties for lo­cal tourism in­dus­tries and in­bound groups to get to know each other and en­hance co­op­er­a­tion be­tween us in the new mar­ket.”

“What we’re try­ing to do is not only wel­come Chi­nese vis­i­tors to Montreal, but also en­cour­age peo­ple in Montreal to go to China as well,” said Michel Bour­don, vi­cepres­i­dent of Montreal Tourism. “We are ex­pect­ing 100,000 clients and vis­i­tors from China from now through 2017.”

Ac­cord­ing to Bour­don, Montreal is the main gate­way to east­ern Canada’s unique his­tory and cul­ture, and is a very se­cure city with lots of things for Chi­nese vis­i­tors to ex­plore.

Montreal travel agen­cies showed a high level of in­ter­est in Bei­jing.

“I think ev­ery­body here is ex­cited about this new mar­ket be­tween China and Montreal with the launch of the new flight from Bei­jing to Montreal,” said Nathalie De Grand­mont, a travel agent in Montreal. “We’re look­ing for­ward to many more Chi­nese vis­i­tors com­ing to Montreal, and this flight will help. Now we can co­op­er­ate bet­ter be­tween the mar­kets with this bridge con­nect­ing the two cul­tures.”

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