18 July 2010

Shit tourism (HK)

Looks bad, but it isn't...

So ok this tour guide is pretty shit, but this experience is hardly new.....she must owe money or something. And thus the anger and aggression directed at the tourists.... bet she's out of a job already because of this and wasn't too savvy about it.

Threats of being locked out etc are being made on the video.

However this is hardly a new thing, TCG has been on tours in China a few times and the guides will regularly take you shopping. I buy nothing and often get an ear full or used to before I went indie travelling (and WITHOUT a lonely planet guide book I might add). I remember specifically a tea place outside Hangzhao where the woman threatened violence against us if we did not buy more tea. A fellow tourist told her to go fuck herself... she was very angry but couldn't do anything.

If you ever go to Beijing or China you can buy a tour and partake in it.....

Shady places will just sell one suspiciously cheap tour... Better places like the 365Inn in Qianmen will advertise 2 kinds of tour. A cheap one with 'shopping time' and a shitty one where 1/3 of your time is spent being taken to specialist build out of town shopping centres where the tour guides earn a commission. They will also sell a more expensive non shopping tour too where you really do go on a proper tour...

Such things exist everywhere, Mongolia for instance last year I kept riding even when riding on motorbike cross country rather large shopping complexes selling tourist tat (for Mongolia I mean). The tour guides always get commission. Not kickbacks commission...

And it has been like this since forever since tour guides make bog all.

So why all the fuss?

Brian Thacker wrote a book about it called Rule number 5 no sex on the bus! Where he describes in depth about how he and other tour guides would receive commission for whatever tourist bought at specially selected stores.

So this is not really the issue, nor are such commissions illegal either?

The kicker here is that to get a tourist visa in to Hong Kong, you gotta be pretty wealthy Chinese person, and thus the tourists who visited HK here are probably a hell of a lot wealthier than a lot of people in HK (25% of people live just above the poverty line in HK according to SOCO of Hong Kong).

And fuck man she's bollocked the whole place up as Hong Kong really has little going for it other than tourism these days (which is why tourists can be so evil in HK and have the cops turn a blind eye against it). I mean HK's factories and status as gateway to China is gone, finance is fried too!

So what do we have? Tourists, what do we have without tourists? Not much, I mean the place can't even supply itself with water and food anymore.....

I hope this woman learns a lesson in humility.

Oh and note the irony too! Most of the shit the Chinese tourists refused to buy are probably made in China anyway... why pay more when you can get it for less back home... well ok sometimes I do.... I mean I was about to travel Siberia and paid through the nose for a petrol stove. But that was life vs death.

Finally, stop going by price alone! UK visitors included! If something looks suspiciously cheap there is often a reason for it....

I'm pretty sure those Korean noodles that cost 200Krw took years off my life! Though then again I've had to live off 6p Asda Ramen, though I found I can no longer eat that shit anymore as my body immediately throws it back up.

1 comment:

  1. You think those mainlanders will take that? I bet they only recorded her yelling at them and beat her up later.