Bill Alen - Aug 6, 2012
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Visiting Australia can be difficult for tourists who come from non-English speaking countries like China. Upon arrival at the airport, you will immediately taste a bit of the monolingual experience that you will encounter outside the arrival zone. All the signs hanging inside the airport are written in English and all the staff is English-speaking.

Felicia Mariani, from Tourism Export Council, admits that language barrier is a challenge for them. It is a big issue that they need to start focusing on, but it is not something that they can easily fix in just one night. Language barrier is a common problem of English-speaking countries that must be taken into consideration.

Australia has now become the top destination that Chinese tourists aim to visit for the following years. According to a recent survey, Chinese citizens are looking for an overseas destination with beaches and natural scenery - a description that best depicts Australia.

Chinese tourist arrivals in Australia have already hit 50,000 in May last year. It is about 17% of the total percentage of tourists arriving in Australia. If the trend continues, Australia will welcome about 600,000 Chinese tourists. This number is closely similar to the number of expected British visitors to arrive this year, which is about 608,000.

As the Chinese tourism market continues to grow, Australia now starts to make necessary changes to cater this particular group of holidaymakers. For instance they now begin to put Mandarin subtitles on their advertising campaigns. They believe that this might be the easy path to help boost the Chinese tourism market in the country.

The Australian government has already declared that they will invest $30 million to advertise Australia on the vibrant Chinese travel market. This includes an increase in marketing funds to develop tourism from China.

Meanwhile, Chinese outbound tourism demonstrates no sign of slowdown. The country's current economic status has only a little effect on the fast-rising international travel market of the country. Based on the most recent figures, there are about 38.6 million mainland Chinese residents who have traveled across the border of the country in the first half of 2012. It is expected that China will have around 80 million overseas trips this year.

However, the Tourism Export Council advises the Australian government not to focus and spend too much money on a single market because it may result in a big impact on the country's economy if that market starts to decline. Mariani stated Queensland as an example. There was a time that the country just focused their attention on a particular market. Australia's market may also struggle and face the same consequences if that will happen again. It is a healthy market for sure, but what might happen in the future is still unknown. Although the booming market of Chinese tourism is an issue that can't be ignored, it is not something that will last forever.

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