Spanning a week from 19 to 25 February, the Spring Festival holidays is about to begin. Macau Government Tourist Office (MGTO) is actively preparing for the peak period in various ways, namely by activating the tourism notification system, increasing inspection duties, sending letters to remind the trade about various concerns, printing a local food guide, carrying out a range of Lunar New Year celebrations in different districts and providing enquiry service at specific spots, among other initiatives. Through preparations in different fronts, MGTO strives not only to cater for citizens and visitors' needs but also to optimize local tourism environment and service quality.
MGTO and Tourism Administration of Guangdong Province will officially activate the "Tourism Notification System for Spring Festival Golden Week" on 16 February, with the system active until 26 February, to ensure smooth hospitality work for visitors during Lunar New Year. The Macau side will take advantage of the Internet to release relevant information online, including the updated numbers of every previous day of Mainland China and overall visitor arrivals at various ports of the city. The two destinations' tourism authorities will also keep close communication.
MGTO has been regularly releasing room rates of different room categories reported by local hotels and guest houses on its website. The Office will send mobile text message to Mainland visitors upon their arrival, alerting them that they can check room rates on MGTO's website, and encouraging visitors to obtain printed materials at MGTO's Tourist Information counters for free, advising them to have more travel tips in hand. In addition, through MGTO’s WeChat account the Office suggested visitors to make room reservation and prepare the itinerary in advance.
Moreover, MGTO will strengthen inspections to different tourist spots, border ports and areas in Macau and increase the manpower at Tourist Information counters during Spring Festival. MGTO's tourism hotline (853) 2833 3000 will maintain its 24-hour operator service to answer tourists' enquiries. The Office's inspectors will also stand by round-the-clock. Visitors can visit MGTO's website for further travel and other related information.
In order to safeguard visitors' rights and tourism quality, MGTO already sent letters reminding travel trade operators to pay attention to hygiene, fire safety, receiving capacity, opening hours, occupational guidelines of hosting tour groups, requirements regarding report of price list of hotel room and food and beverage establishments, and record of hotel guest information upon check-in, among others. The Office also sent letters especially to associations concerning travel agencies suggesting them to communicate with the different travel agencies, in order to coordinate the schedules of visits at the main tourism spots and divert visitor trends, thus minimizing the traffic pressure at the spots and impact on nearby areas, safeguarding the city's tourism image. At the same time, together with the police authorities, the Office will carry on with the fighting against illegal accommodation.
MGTO also regularly communicates and exchanges news with Consumer Council, Public Security Police Force, Macau Customs Service, Marine and Water Bureau, Transport Bureau and so forth. Visitors can visit Public Security Police Force's website: http://www.fsm.gov.mo/psp/pspmonitor on phone or computer and check the real-time border-crossing images at the arrival/departure halls and traffic lanes of Barrier Gate, Outer Harbour and Cotai Frontier Post on the "Real-Time Information Platform of Border Ports", thus choosing the right timing to leave or arrive in Macau. MGTO's website offers a direct link to Public Security Police Force's webpage for the "Real-Time Information Platform of Border Ports".
Besides the above measures, MGTO also jointly published a "Macau Food Guide during Spring Festival" (Chinese version only) with The United Association of Food and Beverage Merchants of Macau, The Industry and Commerce Association of Macau Northern District, General Union of the Macau Neighborhood Association as well as The Industry and Commerce Federation of Islands of Macau. The food guide provides the name and contact list of restaurants and eateries which will open during Spring Festival for convenience of visitors to obtain their operating information.
To give residents and visitors a pleasant experience of the festive season in town, MGTO is presenting a series of events during Spring Festival, including "Parade of Gigantic Golden Dragon", "Parade for the Celebration of the Year of the Ram", "Parade Float Exhibition" and "Fireworks Display for the Celebration of Chinese New Year". The celebrations also include the God of Fortune, along with the three Gods of Happiness, Prosperity and Longevity, the 12 Chinese Zodiac Mascots, Entourage Boy and Girl, Macau Tourism Ambassadors, dragon and lion dances around town, to wish residents and visitors a happy Lunar New Year, distribute "Lai Si" and souvenirs.
Moreover, starting next week eight walking tour routes under the theme "Step Out, Experience Macau's Communities" will be launched, including four new routes added to refined existing four routes, as well as dining options, shopping, public facilities along the routes, among other information. Special Chinese New Year festivities will be held along the walking tour routes as well. Staff will be stationed at different locations to answer visitors' enquiries and introduce them to various tourist spots. They will also distribute the brochure "Step Out, Experience Macau's Communities" (Chinese version only), encouraging locals and visitors to explore the routes.
"Macau Food Guide during Spring Festival" Chinese brochure and Chinese New Year Festivities Program can be downloaded from MGTO's website at http://www.macautourism.gov.mo or acquired at MGTO's Tourist Information counters.