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Ile-de-France: how does David Douillet want to seduce and reassure Chinese tourists?

A delegation of Chinese professionals on a visit to Paris


Rédigé par Laury-Anne CHOLEZ translated by Joséphine Foucher le Mercredi 24 Février 2016

The CRT Paris Île-de-France organized an educational tour in Paris to reassure professionals of Chinese tourism following the attacks of November 13, 2015. A move to try to counteract the 30% drop in visa requests.



Seduction operation for Chinese tourists whose requests to visit the capital dropped by 30% in the first semester of 2016. -  © Creativa - fotolia.com
Seduction operation for Chinese tourists whose requests to visit the capital dropped by 30% in the first semester of 2016. - © Creativa - fotolia.com
Paris brought out the big guns to reassure Chinese tourists.

David Douillet, the fresh new Vice-President of the Regional Council of Ile de France in charge of tourism, met personally with a delegation of 48 Chinese tour-operator directors who came to Paris for an educational tour on February 23, 2015.

An operation that was organized with the initiative of Atout France, in partnership with Air France, Accor, and the CRT Ile-de-France.

This trip was not scheduled in the promotion plan of the CRT but it was deemed necessary to stem the 30% drop of visa requests in the first trimester of 2016.

“We are going to implement all the means necessary to help you boost revenues and number of clients,” declared David Douillet.

The Vice-President extensively focused on all the measures taken by the region in order to ensure the safety of travelers: new security checkpoints in cultural spaces, 250 additional agents in transportation areas.

He also mentioned the creation of new touristic products, in partnership with other regions such as Normandie, the North or Center. “Do not hesitate to be demanding with us because we are at your service in making all Chinese travelers discover France.”

The visitor rate of Chinese tourists increased by 12% in Ile-de-France.

The visitor rate of Chinese tourist blew up last year in Ile-de-France with 1.2 million arrivals, a 49% increase.

An increase largely due to visas, deliverable in 48 hours since 2013, but that could have been even more impressive without the attacks of November 13, 2015.

“Of course our clients were frightened by the attacks of November,” explains Xiaoming Hou, Marketing Director of the agency Linkday.

“But I am rather optimistic for the Spring because people tend to forget fast and the return of warm days will incite them to come back.” Her tour-operator sends 200,000 people to Europe every year, of which 75% go to France.

“If, for a first trip, they cannot visit Paris, then they prefer to postpone their stay,” adds the young woman.

She also believes that other destinations are competing: Northern Europe, Spain, or Australia and the United States for an equivalent budget. But she insists in reassuring us: “Paris remains the dream destination, despite everything that happened.”

“We have an incredible capital, but we lacked in self-reflection and the competition is harsh. We must create new products and expand our frontiers,” raises David Douillet.

Quite a beneficial revelation from this former judoka who will need to fight to keep Paris' black belt in tourism.

Ile-de-France : comment David Douillet veut séduire et rassurer les touristes chinois ?

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