On Thursday, South Korea’s finance minister made a statement that the nation plans to take action to make the most of China’s decision to restart group tours to the country. Choo Kyung-ho declared that the government will work to draw in Chinese travelers by providing them with easier access to visas and transportation, as well as by designing various tourism programs.
The Chinese Ministry of Culture and Tourism announced a week ago that it will permit Chinese group tours to 78 nations, including South Korea, the United States, and Japan. In January and March, China lifted the group ban on roughly 60 countries due to its relaxed COVID-19 policy, but South Korea was not included.
From January to June of 2023, the number of Chinese tourists to South Korea was only 546,000, which is approximately 20 percent of the 2.8 million in the first half of 2019.
Chinese tourists wait in the arrival hall of Incheon International Airport, west of Seoul, on Aug. 15, 2023. (Yonhap)