Cross-strait flights. Tomorrow everything will be okay because...you know...cross-strait flights. Chinese tourists casually throwing around money like the cellophane from their cigarette packs. The initial daily limit of Chinese tourists is 3,000, increasing to 10,000 in 4 years. Tomorrow will only see 687 tourists arriving (90 of which are either officials or journalists).
The Taipei Times devotes its entire second page to Cross-Strait Flights! Four world-class articles and a picture of police practicing handling mock demonstrators sitting in front of a poster-sized picture of CKS Hall. I'd definitely buy that for a dollar!
- Staff reporters Mo Yan-Chih and Jimmy Chuang report on Independent Taipei City Councilor Chen Chien-ming's (陳建銘) concern about the authorities being able to track down Chinese tourists who break the law by doing things such as spitting or throwing cigarette butts in public places. I did have a whole load of crap to say about this, but will let Councilor Chen's following load of crap suffice.
"The city government should conduct assessments on all the possible impacts of Chinese tourists. I call upon the city government to set up regulations to handle violations made by Chinese tourists.”
- Under the headline "Hoteliers bracing for Chinese tourists and culture shock," Ralph Jennings, Reuters, Taipei, Grand Hyatt Taipei, 11th floor, has this to say,
Taiwan citizens, who are influenced heavily by hyper-polite Japan, fear Chinese will yell, spit or cut in on queues, all of which are an anathema to many Taiwanese.
What? He is in Taiwan, right? Not Thailand?
Marriage saving addendum: After showing this to my wife (and ducking) I explained to her that I agreed in part but there is still room for improvement. Taiwanese have also shown themselves to adapt very quickly from terrible practices to near-trendsetters. Now I can sleep with both eyes closed tonight.
Mr. Jennings also states that Chinese, unlike the Taiwanese, will also haggle on the prices of small purchases, merchants at tourist hotspots say.
Well that may be so. But isn't that like debating the merits of absolute zero versus -300F?
Let's start with this from Premier Liu Chao-shiuan (劉兆玄).
He said yesterday the government would not remove signs representing the country because of the arrival of Chinese tourists, adding, however, that it could not force the private sector to act against its will.
Wow, this guy either has a pair or he forgot that his boss, Mr. President Ma, did just that when he was mayor of Taipei and pulled the ROC flag for the Olympic flag while also displaying the Chinese flag.
Look at the second part of the statement about not forcing the private sector to act against its will. In regard to the cross-strait flights, Taiwanese and Chinese airlines were supposed to be allowed to choose the airports they would like to fly in and out of. They both chose only two - Taoyuan International and Songshan in Taipei. And then, government acts.
After a complaint from Kaohsiung Mayor Chen Chu (陳菊), however, the Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) asked Uni Air for one round-trip flight between Kaohsiung and Guangzhou tomorrow.
TransAsia Airways would probably not have considered flying to the east coast if it were not for Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Fu Kun-chi’s (傅崑萁) willingness to pay for a charter flight between Hualien and Xiamen. ( At least she's footing the bill.)
The Taichung City Government also managed to have a Mandarin Airlines flight leave from Chingchuankang Airport (in Taichung) to Xiamen, although the return flight will land at Magong in Penghu County. Mayor Hu 萬 歲 !
Well, the government has definitely done their part. What are you going to do to make sure you get a piece of the pie?
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