Eiffel Tower is among the most popular tourist attractions in Paris. (Shutterstock/MarinaDa)
In response to the rising number of Chinese tourists to France, the country’s national railway company has launched an account on the mobile payment and instant messaging app WeChat, often described as the Chinese version of WhatsApp.
In 2018, more than two million Chinese tourists visited the country, 60% of whom fell into the 18-35 demographic.
They are young, tech-savvy and connected.
To help improve their travel experience, the SNCF has opened an account dedicated to Chinese tourists aimed at helping them travel throughout France, navigate the rail system and buy tickets.
The account is in Mandarin.
Currently the WeChat channel is available in 18 train stations throughout the country including six in Paris and Charles de Gaulle airport, Versailles, Chantilly, Strasbourg, Colmar, Lyon Part-Dieu, Dijon, Marseille, Aix-en-Provence, Nice and Bordeaux St- Jean.
The service will be expanded in future.
Users can navigate between three large themes: travel throughout France, practical guide and train station services.
Between now and 2024, when Paris hosts the summer Olympic games, it’s estimated that Chinese tourist arrivals to France will double.