NEW YORK -- The
China National Tourist Office (CNTO), which this spring launched
the largest advertising campaign in its history, stepped up the
effort this month with ads targeting the millions of commuters
entering New York every week.
The $1.6 million
campaign to promote the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing debuted in
April with a 16-page, four-color insert in the Los Angeles Times,
New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle and USA Today, followed by
20 weeks of half-page ads in USA Today.
In New York,
through June, the CNTO is sponsoring a series of giant advertising
displays in the citys Grand Central Station, with ads on the floors
and walls of passages used by rail commuters.
through July, billboard ads are positioned at the George Washington
Bridge and Lincoln Tunnel, the two busiest crossings between New
Jersey and Manhattan.
Although the 2008
Olympic Games are the impetus for the campaign, the ad message is
meant to lure visitors to the country for much more.
It invites them
to experience all that China and its immense and diverse
destination has to offer, said Shan Zhong Zhu, the CNTOs
The ads also
point readers to www.discoverchinanow.com, where an extensive list of
tour operators packages is highlighted.
The spring and
summer campaign will be followed by a print campaign in the fall,
but further details have not been determined.
Continental Airlines will launch daily nonstop Newark-Beijing
service June 15, and, effective immediately, Continental Airlines
Vacations is offering six tours operated by Pacific Delight World
Pacific Delights senior vice president of marketing and sales, said
the packages offer extra value because passengers will have no
additional cost if they connect to the transpacific service on
Continental flights from 45 U.S. cities as far afield as
Minneapolis, Dallas, Miami and Burlington, Vt.
40-minute Continental service will travel the polar
China is already
on something of a tourism roll. Noting the U.S. is Chinas biggest
and most important long-haul market, Zhu reported that China
welcomed a record-breaking 1.3 million Americans in 2004. In
first-quarter 2005, he added, total tourist arrivals were up 14.8%,
and foreign exchange revenues rose 23.6%.
Zhu noted that
the latest data from the World Tourism Organization showed that
while France, Spain and the U.S. remain the top three destinations,
China moved from No. 5 to No. 4. Italy had held the fourth
the reporter who wrote this article, send e-mail to Nadine Godwin
at [email protected].