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S. Korea to use K-pop, foods, regional festivals to attract tourists

All News 15:38 January 23, 2017

SEOUL, Jan. 23 (Yonhap) -- South Korea said Monday it will develop tour programs featuring Korean foods, lodging at traditional Korean hanok houses, Korean pop content and regional festivals to attract more foreign tourists this year.

In a news conference to explain this year's business plans, Chung Chang-soo, president of the Korea Tourism Organization, said the KTO plans to increase the number of hanok lodging facilities, develop temple and Korean royal court cuisine restaurants, and create luxury cruise and medical tour programs.

Marketing activities will be focused on Southeast Asian, European and Middle Eastern nations this year to lower the ratio of Chinese tourists who account for more than half of inbound foreign tourists.

The KTO aims to attract 3.6 million tourists from Southeast Asia, 2.5 million from Europe and North America and 1.1 million from the Middle East this year.

It will also work to woo 8.3 million Chinese tourists this year, up 2.3 percent from last year, by developing premium tour packages worth over 3 million won (US$2,569) and inviting Chinese power bloggers so they can help attract private Chinese tourists rather than those who come in groups.

The KTO has set a target of getting 2.5 million tourists from Japan this year.

It plans to send its officials to schools in Japan to introduce South Korean tourist attractions so Japanese students can take school field trips to South Korea.

Also included in the release is the establishment of KTO branches in Tehran and Almaty and opening of online web sites in Middle Eastern states to promote the tourism industry in South Korea.

Korea Tourism Organization President Chung Chang-soo (L) speaks at a news conference in Seoul on Jan. 23, 2017. (Yonhap)


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