Visit California’s Global Ready China seminars – held this year in some of the state’s top winter destinations at Mammoth Lakes, Ontario and Lake Tahoe – have established California as the first China-ready ski and snow destination in the country, serving as a major step for California’s winter locales in advance of the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing.
Interest in winter sports is at an all-time high in China, where President Xi Jinping recently rolled out a national plan calling for 300 million people to participate in winter sports and related activities by 2022. Now more than ever, travelers from China are seeking unforgettable winter experiences, and California is primed to deliver.
In FY16/17, Visit California hosted nine Global Ready China seminars across the state, welcoming record industry participation as China’s share of the state’s international travel market continues to skyrocket. More than 800 tourism industry professionals engaged in the Global Ready China program this fiscal year, including owners, managers and front-line staff from hotels, restaurants, retail establishments, attractions, tour companies and more. Increased participation in the Global Ready China program demonstrates the emphasis placed on serving Chinese travelers across the state.
A record 1.3 million Chinese tourists visited the Golden State last year, collectively spending $2.9 billion in travel-related expenses. In the past three years, Visit California has hosted more than 1,800 tourism industry partners as part of Global Ready China, which is designed to prepare the industry to better serve the ever-growing Chinese market.
“We are rolling out the red carpet for Chinese travelers by becoming the first ‘China Ready’ ski and snow destination in the country,” said Visit California President and CEO Caroline Beteta. “This latest evolution of the innovative series keeps California businesses competitively positioned to attract and engage visitors from this critically important market.”
For a growing number of Chinese visitors, the state’s winter and snow activities are rapidly gaining popularity. Whether skiing, sledding or snowboarding, California is home to one of the longest ski seasons in North America, making it the ultimate landscape for the ideal snowy adventure.
“California’s ski resorts are the perfect place for visitors from around the world to explore the diverse opportunities winter destinations have to offer,” said John Urdi, executive director of Mammoth Lakes Tourism. “We’ve seen a significant uptick in Chinese visitors in recent years and are adapting our customer experience to make sure their trip to the Golden State is one-of-a-kind.”
Visitation from China is expected to surpass 2 million to California by 2020. To ensure California’s ski and snow destinations are well-positioned to accommodate international visitors, Visit California’s Global Ready China seminars provided businesses with the insight needed to provide unique, tailored and culturally relevant vacation experiences for visitors from China.
“International visitors are an economic engine for local communities, providing valuable jobs and fueling growth for our tourism industry,” said Andy Wirth, president and CEO of Squaw Valley Ski Holdings. “With the record snowfall this season, we’re committed to becoming Global Ready so that Chinese visitors can enjoy all California’s winter wonderland has to offer.”
Since 2015, Visit California has hosted Global Ready China seminars to equip local businesses with cultural, sales and service trainings to ensure a quality travel experience for visitors from California’s top overseas market. Attendees represent all sectors of the travel industry, including hotels, attractions, retail establishments, restaurants, tour operators and more.
With interest reaching a fever pitch, amplified by a record snowfall that is enabling California resorts to lengthen their ski seasons into the summer, more visitors than ever are hitting the slopes to discover all that the Golden State’s winter experience has to offer.
12/9/2014 0 Comments
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