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Guangzhou airport improves tourist services

By ZHENG CAIXIONG in Guangzhou | China Daily | Updated: 2024-04-02 09:59
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Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport. [Photo/VCG]

Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport, a major aviation hub in southern China, is ramping up efforts to create a world-class experience for international travelers by improving visa application services, customs clearance and payment options.

The airport recently launched its first optimized payment service demonstration zone, offering foreign visitors easier access to currency exchange and electronic payment options upon arrival. The initiative, a collaboration between Guangzhou's commerce bureau, financial committee and the central bank, aims to streamline the arrival process for business people and tourists.

"We're strengthening cooperation with various airport authorities to better serve international travelers," said Liu Jindong, an official with Guangzhou's commerce bureau. "This includes simplifying procedures and offering dedicated support for those coming to Guangzhou for business, sightseeing or exhibitions."

The airport currently boasts seven currency exchange centers and a dedicated consultation counter for overseas visitors seeking payment assistance. Since the beginning of the year, the centers have processed over 14,000 transactions, with over 4,700 foreign passengers utilizing currency exchange services last month alone.

Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport, one of the busiest airports on the Chinese mainland, plays a crucial role in connecting the southern metropolis to the world. The recent service improvements further support the city's goal of promoting international exchange and fostering high-quality development.

For the 135th China Import and Export Fair, commonly known as the Canton Fair, which will open on April 15, the China Foreign Trade Center will establish dedicated counters at the airport. They will allow foreign business attendees to avoid lengthy queues by applying for necessary documents and certificates for the fair upon arrival, instead of having to visit the fair complex in Haizhu district.

"Coming to Guangzhou is becoming increasingly convenient," said one foreign business representative who recently attended a furniture expo in the city. "The airport offers counters specifically designed to guide visitors with setting up digital payment options, and even my hotel provides manual currency exchange services.

"These improvements eliminate the need to carry large amounts of cash when visiting Guangzhou."

Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport has witnessed a significant surge in passenger traffic this year, with over 3.1 million inbound and outbound passengers recorded as of Thursday — a year-on-year increase of nearly 250 percent.

The airport has also facilitated visa-free entry and transit for nearly 280,000 foreign nationals, highlighting its growing importance as an international travel hub.

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