The Jakarta Post
Chinese tourists stand in front of a souvenir stall in Bali. (thejakartapost.com/Raditya Margi)
The Badung regency administration in Bali and local tourism players have welcomed the lifting of a Chinese travel warning.
"We're grateful that the Chinese government has lifted its travel warning, since the Indonesian government has convinced them that Bali is safe to visit and has given guarantees if visitors get stranded due to a Mount Agung eruption by issuing a cooperation statement," said Badung Tourism Agency head I Made Badra on Wednesday as quoted by Antara news agency.
Following the move, Badra said foreign arrivals was estimated to reach 16,000 per day in January and hotel occupancy 75 percent of the 130,000 starred-hotel rooms available in Badung.
"We're optimistic that our target of attracting at least 5,000 Chinese tourists to Bali during Imlek in February 2018 can also be reach," he said.
The number of Chinese visitors to Bali decreased by 200,000 people per month after Mt. Agung erupted. "The decrease is quite big and we continue to make the best efforts for Bali tourism," said Badra, adding that Badung was usually visited by 16,000 foreign tourists per day, but the number had dropped to 15,000 after the eruption.
Badung Tourism Promotion Agency head IGA Ngurah Rai Suryawijaya said if Ngurah Rai Airport was closed because of an eruption, hoteliers were prepared to provide one free night accommodation.
"I'm still optimistic that many Chinese tourists will come to Bali, especially in February to celebrate Imlek," he said. (kes)