New Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau bridge to pave the way for more incentive groups

The opening of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau bridge in mid-2018 is expected to result in more incentive groups to Hong Kong and Macau adding China, particularly Guangdong province, to their itinerary.

Irene Va Kuan Lau, executive director of Macau Trade and Investment Promotion Institute, said: “The bridge will grant us better access to neighbouring destinations. We are working with these cities (to position) Macau as the (trade) gateway to the Guangdong region.”

Once completed, the bridge puts the three cities of Zhuhai, Macau, and Hong Kong within an hour’s commute of each other.

“For example, when we have an exhibition in Macau, with exhibitors from Europe or Portuguese-speaking countries, we will bring participants to visit factories in neighbouring cities. The bridge will get them around quickly.”

She added that Macau would also share facilities with neighbouring cities. For example, talks are ongoing with the central government to offer a 24-hour visa-free facility to neighbouring cities for travellers bound for business events in Macau.

DMCs in Shenzhen are also stoked about the bridge’s impending operations.

Kin Qin, deputy general manager, Century Holiday International Travel Group, said: “Hong Kong and Macau are not new to our (South-east Asian) and Indian markets but with the (improved) access we can now offer new things for a Hong Kong-Macau itinerary (such as) including Zhuhai in a five- or six-day incentive programme.”

An example is to have a theme dinner in Zhuhai or Shenzhen, plus a one-night stay.

Qin observed that her Indian clients are in favour of a Hong Kong, Macau and Zhuhai combination, while demand for such itineraries is growing among her Indonesian and Malaysian customers.

This year, Qin has secured five to six groups from Indonesia and Malaysia for such programmes.

Palace International Travel Group in Hong Kong is also working to develop programmes with the help of the new bridge.

Its managing director, Tenny Wong, said a business programme in Hong Kong can benefit from being supplemented by the leisure draws in Macau and factory visits in Guangdong province.

Wong intends to promote longer programmes of 10 days that feature one or two days of informative factory visits.

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