Starting this Spring, travellers can head straight to the heart of Europe, to Brussels, from twice as many cities in China than before.
Hainan Airline which already flies from Beijing and Shanghai will now operate two flights per week from Shenzhen on board a Boeing 787 Dreamliner, and Cathay Pacific Airlines is introducing four flights a week from Hong Kong on board a state of the art Airbus A350. This enhanced offer of departure cities with direct flights to Brussels will make it even easier for EU tourism businesses and authorities to grow their share of the Chinese market using the valuable resources already available at the 2018 EU-China Tourism Year site (ecty2018.org).
Tourism businesses can take advantage of this doubling of the number of departure cities to Belgium to promote what Belgium can offer to the Chinese tourist. The Chinese are famous for their love of food and Belgium is much more than just its celebrated chocolates, beer and fries. Its famously indulgent cuisine is an asset in attracting the Chinese tourist. For the Chinese shopper there are unique shopping opportunities such as the much heralded Belgian fashion sector and the remarkable world class contemporary art scene. And there is a wealth of architectural treasures, seasonal festivals, a vibrant folkloric tradition, and a buzzing cultural scene to appeal to the enthusiasm of the Chinese visitor.
Belgium is small but this is a great selling point as it is dense with cultural, architectural and gastronomic attractions which are all easily explored by road or rail. Finally, with its central location Brussels is extremely convenient to the rest of Europe. London, Amsterdam, Cologne and Paris are each about an hour away by rapid rail with convenient city center to city center termini. Scandinavia, Germany, the French Riviera, Austria, Spain, Portugal, Italy, even Greece and the Balkans are short, frequent flights away.