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UAE should adapt more to attract Chinese tourists
As China emerges as the fastest growing source market for the United Arab Emirates (UAE) tourism, the UAE should take more steps for the smartphone-loving Chinese visitors, said Sanat Kagwad, business head of Dubai-based company TechTree, on Thursday.
Speaking to Xinhua on the sidelines of the 2nd annual Travel Tech Middle East Conference held in Dubai, Kagwad said "all market participants whether hotels, tour operators or fancy restaurants still have room for improvement to lure smartphone-loving Chinese tourists."
He said "language and payment options" are the two most important aspects, stressing the need of "applications for smartphones, and solutions for China's messenger app WeChat in Mandarin and guests from China to pay through services like China's UnionPay or Alipay."
Earlier in the week, Dubai Duty Free marked the Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival with a promotion running until Oct. 7 in collaboration with UnionPay International, offering gift cards to visitors from China who spend a certain amount of money here.
Last month, family leisure park operator Dubai Parks and Resorts established a strategic partnership with UnionPay to start the payment method for Chinese visitors here.
In January, Dubai tourism authorities signed a deal with China's ICT giant Huawei to position the Gulf Arab emirate as a travel destination for visitors from the Middle East, Africa and China.
In 2017, the number of Chinese tourists to the UAE exceeded 1 million, and the transit passengers through UAE reached 3.5 million.
However, the UAE tourism industry still tries to keep Chinese tourists for longer stays, as on average they stay less than two days in the country, according to UAE official data.
  Source: Xinhua Net

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