The Zimbabwe Tourism Authority and Welcome China has held a China Ready Certification for the tourism industry in Harare. The training program was designed to assist the destination and service providers to be ready for Chinese visitors and promote to the market effectively.
The training session has so far generated a lot of interest in the Zimbabwean market and is expected to host over 100 participants. It is organized by CBISN and exclusively issued by China Outbound Tourism Research Academy (COTA). China Ready Certification acts as an assurance measure that helps to attract Chinese tourists to certified destinations and service providers. There have been increased tourist arrivals in all destinations that have implemented and adopted the China Ready Certification Program.
ZTA Chief Executive, Rita Likukuma,said there was need for the industry to take China as a serious potential source market and there was need to prioritize their needs “The China Ready certification acts as a seal of approval to destination Zimbabwe and this should see improved tourist visits by the Chinese as they are assured their expectations will be met. China Ready program is designed to assist destination and service providers to be ready for Chinese visitors and promote the market effectively.
“From the industry training needs analysis we conducted, it emerged that tourism operators do not understand the Chinese market, (that is) their values, norms and culture, hence it is envisaged this training will bridge that gap”, she added.
China Ready is a training program consisting of a minimum 20 modules that prepares tourism and ancillary services operators imparting skills on how to best attract the Chinese market. Some of these skills include but not limited to; Chinese culture and customs, Chinese industry specific knowledge, marketing, segmentation, trending technologies, behavior of Chinese visitors and decision-making process among others. The full training program will lead to a 12-month interactive online training and certification of individuals and organisations as China Ready. This training program will go a long way in improving the tourism industry and other business sectors Chinese market appreciation hence it is critical that all designated tourist operators, tourism training institutions and the lead implementing agencies (METHI, MOFA, ZIA, ZTA, ZIMPARKS, ZIMTRADE, CAAZ) invest in fully understanding the Chinese market by undertaking this training.