To perk up its tourism, Seoul turns to music

Published on : Wednesday, October 16, 2019

In 2019, a total of about 782 million domestic trips were made by the travelers from China during the seven-day National Day holiday, while about 7 million outbound trips were made during the season, the Tourism Ministry of China announced on Tuesday.


This data shows that the tourism industry is a major driving force that cannot be overlooked. For this reason, many Chinese cities are keeping no stones unturned to attract tourists through different strategies like promoting local historical and cultural heritage. In South Korea, Seoul, the capital city is focusing on modern facet of its culture to boost tourism through K-pop.


On September 9, for Seoul, K-pop boy group BTS was declared as Honorary Tourism Ambassadors. This will be the third consecutive year that said band have been official ambassadors of the city. Apparently, given the large membership in the so-called ARMY (the name by which BTS fans call themselves), selecting the seven-member boy band as ambassadors is certainly a blessing for the city‘s tourism industry.


In April 2019, the seven-member band created history by becoming the first South Korean musical guest to perform on Saturday Night Live (SNL), the well-known US sketch-comedy show on NBC. The band introduced K-pop to numerous SNL watchers, most of whom were not aware of it. Many explained that they were astonished by the talented performance of the band with some saying they would start downloading their music.


From there it‘s possible that through K-pop, these new aficionados will express their interest in learning more about the country and visiting it in person someday.


At a press conference arranged on September 27th by Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon, the office noted that it has seen a shift from tour groups to individual tourists visiting the city.


“The proportion of individual tourists has risen to 98 percent, in comparison to a bit over 50 percent four to five years ago. K-pop is one significant factor that contributed to growth in the number of individual tourists,” the mayor said.


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