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Payments made easier for foreign visitors, expats

Updated: 2024-05-10 09:58 ( China Daily )
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A Russian teacher who works at Shenyang University, watches her sons practice Chinese martial arts in Shenyang, Liaoning province, in December. PAN YULONG/XINHUA

Industry thriving

The inbound tourism market in Dalian is thriving, Wang said.

In early January, service guarantees were organized for inbound tourism, including charter flights and international cruise ships.

On March 10, the international cruise ship Zuiderdam docked at Dalian Port cruise terminal, bringing 2,013 passengers and crew members from 47 countries and regions for a day of activities.

"Receiving international cruise ships is an important source of inbound tourism for Dalian's long-haul markets in Europe and America," said Wang, adding that various activities have helped attract tourists from key markets such as Japan, Korea and Russia.

"These will lay a solid foundation for the city to achieve a breakthrough in inbound tourism development throughout the year," he said.

Govender, the kindergarten teacher, said the city's beauty and the remarkable development is making it more appealing to both expats and visitors.

"Dalian is a very uniquely beautiful and visitor-friendly city. I have an extensive network of friends, both foreign and Chinese, here. Life is certainly very convenient in China," she said.

Over the years, adjustments have been made to make life easier for foreigners living in Dalian, particularly in terms of signs and notices in English and ease of getting around the city.

Hoseon Yoon from South Korea who had traveled to Dalian more than 10 years ago, said it is more convenient on this trip thanks to the various payment methods.

"At the airport, I easily found ATMs and currency exchange points, and many places accepted foreign bank card payments," he said.

Upon arrival, with the help of a waiter at a coffee shop, he was able to make payments through his mobile phone, which made his visit more convenient in the following days.

"Dalian has done a great job, but there is still room for improvement. When we went to Shanghai, we obtained a wealth of information through the city's official online portal for expat services, which provides a one-stop query service for foreign tourists. Dalian could consider launching a similar website," said Yoon.

Kindergarten teacher Govender, who has worked in other countries, suggested Dalian boost visitors' access to local attractions by introducing double-decker sightseeing buses.

She also said an English-language app that can provide information about public transportation routes and schedules, would make it easier for foreigners to navigate the city.

"I must say Dalian has improved drastically. When I first arrived here, bakeries and Western restaurants were rare. But now Dalian can boast of a wide variety of fine dining options," she said.

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