Tainan's Major Tourist Attractions Reached 5.5 million Visitors in July, With Stellar Results in the First Half of the Year
I. Eye-catching results in travel accommodations
Despite the COVID-19 epidemic deeply impacting the tourism industry, Tainan’s tourism sector has grown against the odds. The city government has launched projects to improve the quality of accommodation and related relief and revitalization programs to seize opportunities, which has culminated in impressive figures for the travel accommodation sector. The travel accommodation sector ranks first among the six special municipalities in Taiwan and won the "Triple Crown" in terms of "number of venues", "growth rate" and "occupancy rate". The number of legal accommodations in the city exceeded 750, providing nearly 15,000 rooms. Tainan City ranked first in the six special municipalities in terms of the number of accommodation venues and growth for two consecutive years from 2020 to 2021. The grand opening of the first BOT hotel project in Tainan, the Formosa Yacht Resort, was held in June this year, and a number of other large-scale hotels, including the Aloft Tainan Anping and the Grand Banyan Hotel have also entered operations. With a total investment of NT$3.7 billion and 532 additional rooms, the three lodges are expected to enable Tainan's tourism industry to continue to flourish.
II. Unprecedented investments in tourism infrastructure
Following the approval of the Forward-looking Infrastructure Development Program for the tourism industry, with an all-time high of NT$186 million allocated by the Tourism Bureau of the MOTC at the end of last year, this year (2022) saw Tainan awarded with another NT$200 million grant from the Tourism Bureau of the MOTC for the "Key Scenic Area Recreation Corridor - Golden Coast New Ocean Paradise" project under fierce competition from across the nation. With unprecedented funding obtained, together with other subsidies from the central government, the total budget for tourism construction is currently over NT$500 million. The Tourism Bureau of the Tainan City Government is accelerating its efforts to optimize Tainan's tourism environment, continuing to improve various infrastructure services, and maximizing the overall tourism momentum of the city’s scenic areas.
III. Leading tourism businesses
With the active management and counseling by Tainan City’s Tourism Bureau, the performance evaluation of the travel accommodation industry has been ranked as outstanding for three consecutive years, and the tourism and recreation industry under the Bureau’s management - Jianshanpi Jiangnan Resort - has been ranked as outstanding for 14 consecutive years and Wanpi World Safari Zoo has been ranked as outstanding for 11 consecutive years. Since Mayor Huang took office, the city has launched an innovative plan to improve the quality of travel accommodations year after year, such as pioneering the nation’s first certification and mark system. Following the Tainan City B&B Legal Room Mark in 2019, the Certification Mark of Home Stay Facility Operation Convention in Tainan Tourist Areas in 2020, and the Tainan City Authorized Room Mark in 2021, the "Tainan City Quality Hotel Evaluation Counseling Program" was launched. A total of 36 hotels have been awarded the city's Quality Hotel Award, improving the overall quality of accommodation in the city and ensuring visitors enjoy their stay in Tainan.
IV. Impressive City Marketing Campaigns
The city's marketing campaigns are optimized through a variety of means, such as showcasing special festivals and events, creation of viral topics and online marketing. A series of activities planned in the first half of the year, such as the "Love in Tainan Romantic Sea of Lights", "Meiling Firefly Watching Season", water activities, Qigu Clam Digging Experience, Xinying Sweet Festival and various exciting and fun activities at scenic spots throughout Tainan have attracted over 200,000 visitors in the first half of the year, transforming Tainan into a tourism hotspot. In addition to the various activities, Tainan tourism is also promoted through creative marketing campaigns. With the traditional Ghost Festival as a viral topic, the Tourism Bureau launched the "The Most Powerful Female Ghost in Tainan" walking route, with four sessions fully booked as soon as they were made available. In light of the craze over the TV series "Mad Doctor", a map was produced to promote the various locations where the TV series was shot as well as featured foods, catching on opportunities to market Tainan. The Travel Tainan App has also been upgraded to integrate the marketing of the city's mascot, Sababoy, to provide a better and more exciting city experience.
V. Creative Marketing of the Tainan’s Culinary Treasures
In order to counsel the city’s food service industry to prepare for the 2022 Michelin rating, the "Michelin Star Carnival" was held. 156 restaurants participated in the event to warm up for the Michelin ratings. In addition, a number of activities were held to prepare restaurants for potential listing on the Michelin Guide, including 6 lectures in the Master Series, event tours across the city’s 37 districts, and 2 sharing sessions on Bibendum (Michelin Man). The events were attended by 800 restaurants vying for a good result in the Michelin Guide Tainan 2022. This year saw the launch of innovative programs such as the "Tainan Good Food Light Tour", with 5 sessions all fully booked. Tainan's first co-branded beer, "Golden Pineapple" was also launched, combining the Tainan Fried Chicken Festival, Burger Festival and the Dongshan 175 Coffee Road tourism promotion campaigns, with more than 30,000 participants, successfully marketing Tainan tourism with food.
VI. Global Exposure and International Tourism
In order to catch on the highly-anticipated international tourism wave in a post-pandemic era, Tainan is actively developing the city’s potential for the inbound tourism market. The "TRULY TAIWAN" international marketing campaign reached 100 million people in Japan, Korea, Vietnam, Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong. In particular, Japan, which accounts for more than one-third of Tainan's international tourism value, is a key target market for Tainan tourism. The Hankyu Osaka Umeda Station, JR Osaka Station, and JR Osaka Loop Line train carriages in Japan were placed with advertisements emphasizing "Tainan is the best place to travel to in Taiwan", which is estimated to reach over 30 million people in one month, successfully driving the topic of Tainan tourism and receiving buzz from Japanese media and netizens. Tainan City led the nation by holding the first-ever "Tainan-Japan Inbound Tourism Business Seminar and Presentation", calling on hotel operators in the 37 districts of Tainan to participate. As many as 100 travel industry participants attended the online event, all of whom are eager to deploy resources to catch on business opportunities after the opening of borders to international visitors.
VII. Empowering Tourism Revitalization
In order to revitalize tourism, the first "Tourism Revitalization Alliance" was created to encourage healthy travel to Tainan after the epidemic. Nearly 100 accommodation and tourism businesses participated in related promotional activities, and the occupancy rate increased by 20% compared to the same period last year, driving 10,000 room stays, 35,000 lodgers, and NT$33.08 million in tourism output. The 2022 digital version of "Tainan Day Pass Voucher" was launched to provide complimentary e-vouchers for free bus rides and exclusive store offers. Thousands of businesses are participating, with 300 exciting prizes drawn every month. Currently, over 12,000 applications have been received for the Tainan Day Pass e-vouchers. In addition, Tainan Revitalization Tourism Group Travel Subsidies Program was also launched, and the total number of beneficiaries is estimated to be 4,773 in 2022, with an estimated tourism output of more than NT$30 million. In line with the anticipated wave of tourists with the domestic travel subsidy program, a "Tourism Revitalization Preparation Presentation" was held. More than 560 businesses have joined the domestic travel subsidy program, and 46,406 accommodation stays were booked in the city, generating about NT$153 million in economic output and driving tourism business opportunities in the post-pandemic era.
Tainan Mayor Huang Wei-Che pointed out that Tainan City has a distinct identity and charm, and with active participation by the industry and promotion campaigns by the city government team, we can work together for the tourism of Tainan, so that Tainan tourism can deliver brilliant results. Tainan Tourism Bureau Director-General Kuo Chen-Hui also noted that in the future, while revitalizing the tourism industry, in addition to continuously optimizing tourism services and hardware, the city will continue to seize all opportunities to make Tainan the first choice of tourists and welcome another wave of tourism peak in the post-pandemic era, while striving towards a brand new tourism milestone under the leadership of Mayor Huang.