Panama eyes attracting more Chinese tourists

Published on : Friday, June 23, 2017

Chinese touristsChinese tour operators are eyeing Panama as a tourist hotspot, as an aftermath of the two countries making diplomatic ties.

 
Operators are planning to promote tour packages geared toward U.S. bound Chinese tourists with Panama as an option for an extended one or two-day itinerary. Proposed itineraries include U.S.-Mexico-Panama and Mexico-Panama-Cuba with each tour to include an additional Latin American country.

 
This effort will help more Chinese tourists visit the Central American nation that straddles two oceans with its famous canal. While Chinese citizens do not currently enjoy visa-free entry to Panama, passport holders with a U.S., Canada, Australia, U.K. or E.U. travel permit will be permitted to enter the country for up to 30 days.

 
Panama’s attractions, including its northern coast is made up of the more than 400 San Blas Islands. These islands would provide tourists with a relaxed and solitary environment due to their “unspoiled and beautiful landscapes, indigenous people and simple lifestyles.”
Latin American countries like Panama are keenly eyeing Chinese tourists, 135 million of whom traveled aboard in 2016, spending a total of US$261 billion, according to the World Tourism Organization.

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