Taiwan Tourism Bureau to offer getaway packages
Hawaii has long eyed Taiwan as an emerging tourism market with plenty of potential. Now, the target has become the hunter.
Officials from the Taiwan Tourism Bureau are slated to announce specially designed tour packages for travel from Hawaii to Taiwan today during an event at the Chinatown Cultural Plaza in Honolulu.
Tour operators, including Air & Sea Travel, Best Tours, ES International and R&C Travel, are offering special incentives to get Hawaii residents to make Taiwan a vacation destination or consider staying over during stopovers.
"We are thrilled to focus our attention on Hawaii as we know there is a natural synergy between the two islands," said Trust Lin, director of the Taiwan Tourism Bureau office in Los Angeles. "Taiwan has a different kind of island vibe that we believe will be attractive to our friends in Hawaii, and we look forward to opening our doors to them and sharing the best that Taiwan has to offer."
Taiwan, which is 10 hours from Hawaii by direct flight, is situated off the southeast coast of the Asian continent, about 100 miles across the Taiwan Straits from mainland China. With Japan to the north and the Philippines to the south, Taiwan is considered an essential hub for travel to Asia.
Up until recently, Taiwan was more known as an industrial powerhouse than for its tourism offerings, said Antonio Andres, director of Best Tours, which will begin offering short- and longer-term vacation packages this fall for Hawaii residents that want to visit Taiwan. Now, there are plenty of opportunities for visitors to enjoy vacationing in Taiwan, he said.
"About $150 a day buys a tour package that includes four- and five-star accommodations, breakfast, all tours and transfers," Andres said. "It's a very high quality and affordable destination. Visitors will enjoy the chance to interact with indigenous people and visit the popular national parks and hot springs."
Further cementing ties with Taiwan is good for Hawaii's own visitor market, said State Tourism Liaison Marsha Wienert.
"Taiwan is in the same category as Korea and China in terms of its potential as one of our top emerging markets," Wienert said. "Having Hawaii residents visit Taiwan is just one more way that we can develop relationships with this market."