Ready, aim… travel! Chinese seek thrills
in San Francisco
Affluent Chinese tourists are seeking unique and personalized experiences in the US as they have more confidence and flexibility to travel on their own, said tour operators.
“Shooting, hunting and fishing from a luxury yacht are among the most popular activities our customers are pursuing,” said Gary Guo, who is based in Los Angeles and runs agency “Do Your Brand Tour”. His company helps travelers design tours or add short side trips to their itineraries according to their interests.
“They are especially interested in shooting firearms because it’s not permitted in China,” he said. “There are many shooting clubs where tourists have a large selection of different types of firearms and bullets in San Francisco and Los Angeles.”
“To Chinese, shooting guns is like mysterious. They are curious about it,” said Nick Li, a shooting instructor in Los Angeles. “Their curiosity is satisfied when they hold in their hands the firearms they have seen in movies or games, and shoot.”
Li got his license two years ago and has been receiving tourists ever since under his tour-guide friends’ suggestion.
“I was advised to combine my own interest and tourism together. It turns out to be good,” said Li, who also works as hunting guide.
Now Li accommodates Chinese tourists every week. “Half of my customers are from China. They know me from tour guides or past customers,” he said.
The service is not cheap. A halfday hunting tour usually costs $1,000 per person and a threeday tour of hunting from helicopter costs $15,000 per person,