Hong Kong’s new global promotional campaign will “kickstart” the city’s reopening to international travelers, the Hong Kong Tourism Board told CNBC.squawk box asia” on friday.
As part of the “Hello Hong Kong” campaign launched on Thursday, 500,000 air tickets gift From March to 6 months.
Tickets are sold through three Hong Kong airlines (Cathay Pacific, HK Express and Hong Kong Airlines).
free tickets are HK$2 billion ($255 million) relief package What the government provided airlines in 2020 in the middle of a pandemic.
The Hong Kong Tourism Board also said it is investing at least HK$100 million in early-stage publicity for the campaign. at the launch ceremony.
However, Hong Kong still faces a “dilemma”. Hong Kong’s infrastructure will have to catch up to accommodate the growing number of tourists, said Dane Cheng, executive director of the tourism board.
“I think we really saw this dilemma when other markets and destinations started to reopen in the last year or so. It’s hard to keep up… especially for airlines, airports and even hotels,” he said. told CNBC.
“[But] We want to kickstart…Hong Kong and then the mainland with a clear message to the world—we are finally reopening.”
The ticket giveaway will be done in stages. Starting with the Southeast Asian market, followed by Mainland China and North Asia, and finally the rest of the world.
About 80,000 tickets have also been booked for Hong Kong residents, which authorities aim to distribute in the summer.
Cheng said ticket numbers for each region are based on “traffic share” and pre-pandemic visitor numbers.
Fred Lam, CEO of Hong Kong’s airport authority, also hopes the free tickets will bring synergies. About the number of visitors.
“I hope whoever receives the ticket will bring a couple more friends and family. [to Hong Kong],” according to CNBC’s translation of Lam’s comments at the campaign launch ceremony.
“We have only distributed 500,000 airline tickets, but we believe we will have over 1.5 million tourists,” Lam added. This is approximately 10% of the total number of visitors expected during the campaign period.
How visitors can get their hands on these free tickets, he said, will depend on “local market regulations and customs.”
“[That] It includes large lucky draws that can be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis, one-time-buy free tickets, and play games,” Lam said.
Hong Kong Finance Minister Paul Chan Mo-po (fourth, right) speaking at the launch of the “Hello Hong Kong” campaign on February 2, 2023.
Chen Yongnuo | China News Service | Getty Images
China said on Friday Cross-border travel with Hong Kong and Macau We will fully reopen from February 6th, eliminate mandatory pre-departure inspections and lift arrival quotas. According to a Reuters report.
“I think it’s clear that the Hong Kong government and the central government on the mainland are very cautious. [made] It is very clear that we want everything to resume in an orderly and progressive manner,” Cheng said.
He added that before the pandemic, Hong Kong had “more than 25 million overnight guests” each year and it would take time for the city to “regain” those numbers.
Cheng said the past two to three years have been “challenging” for Hong Kong’s MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions) industry. Over 1.6 million foreign tourists 2019 before the pandemic.
“In the last year or so, other countries, cities and destinations have started to open up. Of course, Hong Kong has had some great events over the years.
“Anchor event [were] When I move, they say sorry by saying, ‘I’m going to another place in Southeast Asia or the Middle East,’ or basically put it off and put it off. ”
However, he said the city is now “confident” and “looks forward to welcoming visitors again.”
It can be seen in the ‘Hello Hong Kong’ campaign with the 2023 lineup Over 250 events and festivals — Hong Kong Marathon, Clockunflap Music Festival, Hong Kong Rugby Sevens and more.
More than 100 international MICE events are planned for this year, according to the city’s tourism office.