China will create a “blacklist” of its tourists who behave badly overseas, state-media reported, after several embarrassing incidents involving Chinese travelling abroad.
The country’s national tourism administration will keep a database of travellers who commit offences, with their names passed onto the police, customs officials and even banks, the official Xinhua news agency reported Saturday. Offences that could earn obnoxious tourists a place on the blacklist include “acting antisocially on public transport, damaging private or public property, disrespecting local customs, sabotaging historical exhibits or engaging in gambling or pornographic activities,” Xinhua said.
People will be blacklisted for two years after they offend, it added. China’s economy has boomed over the past decade, expanding the ranks of its middle-class who are hungry for foreign travel after the country’s decades of isolation in the last century. Chinese travellers took 100 million “outbound” trips — including to Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan — last year, according to official figures.
But the surge of wanderlust has left some officials back home red-faced and the blacklist is the latest of China’s efforts to control its citizens behaviour abroad. Chinese tourists were reported to
have outraged locals in Thailand this year by drying underwear in an airport, defecating in public and kicking a bell at a temple.
Meanwhile, Beijing is to impose a limit on the number of mainland Chinese visitors to Hong Kong, a politician and media said Sunday, after a series of protests against the influx from over the border.
The southern Chinese city has been inundated by a stream of tourists from mainland China, who often pay short visits to the city to snap up daily necessities from baby formula to nappies. The so-called parallel traders, who dodge hefty tariffs on their return, have become a source of tension in the semi-autonomous city leading to angry rallies where protesters clashed with the police. “Too many people are coming through the unlimited entry permits. (Imposing a limit) is a step forward,” Michael Tien, member of the National People’s Congress said.