Commissions to tour guides

Jan 22nd, 2010, 08:04 AM
  #1  
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Commissions to tour guides

This article has an interesting explanation of the economics of tour guiding in Beijing (and by extension China in general): http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/metro/2...nt_9356022.htm (picked up from the oriental list).
thursdaysd is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2010, 08:08 AM
  #2  
 
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And how about THIS bit:

'...The People's Daily wrote in November that a typical day tour in Beijing contains two hours of sightseeing and six of shopping...'
dogster is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2010, 03:36 PM
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I just have to reply to this to get it back to the top. The comment about 6 hrs of shopping to 2 of sightseeing is priceless!
Kathie is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2010, 05:03 PM
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Being from China Daily, the article doesn't do more than touch on problems actually far more profound than suggested. Far from being paid a miserable ¥50 per tour, in some cases guides actually have to bid for the right to take out tour groups, and pay tour companies to be allowed to do so. Note (as often mentioned here) the routine 50% kick-back on purchases made. They have their hands so deeply in your pocket that they are tickling your toes.

Peter N-H
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Jan 22nd, 2010, 05:20 PM
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Perhaps worth noting: the "average" tourist to Beijing is Asian, not western. Having traveled with Asians, especially Thais, many times, I have to say that, sadly, most of them are more interested in shopping than historical or cultural attractions. One Thai tour guide who escorted trips to France lamented to me that his fellow countrymen just wanted to have their picture taken in front of the Eiffel Tower and Mona Lisa, then go shopping.

The time spent shopping in Beijing may reflect who the customers are as much as it reflects the "greed" of the tour guides/companies.
MichaelBKK is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2010, 11:26 PM
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> The time spent shopping in Beijing may reflect who the customers are as much as it reflects the "greed" of the tour guides/companies.

This is to misunderstand the nature of the problem. If a guide, at my request, takes me shopping to places I might not discover for myself to pay local prices for locally made goods, that's one thing. What we are talking about here, however, are forced shopping 'opportunities' at locations whose entire purpose is to separate foreign visitors from as much money as possible (ten or fifteen times the real local price, say) half of which is taken as a kick-back.

I think it's clear where the greed lies here, and there are no excuses to be made here.

Peter N-H
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