In just the past few days, there have been two key moves that ease restrictions for travel from China to the U.S. Tourism officials have been clear that the lifting of these restrictions is critical to a full recovery –though key hurdles remain.
On Thursday, China lifted pandemic-era group tour restrictions for the U.S. and other key markets. Before the lift, Chinese travel agencies were banned from selling outbound group or package travel to the U.S.
And on Friday, the U.S. and Chinese governments agreed to double the number of weekly flights. Starting September 1, 18 weekly flights will be allowed. On October 29, that rises to 24 flights.
But even with the air-service agreement, the number of flights is nowhere near the more than 150 that China and the U.S. had before the pandemic.
There’s also the worsening visa processing delay problem, according to the U.S. Travel Association. On average, Chinese travelers have to wait over four months at U.S. embassies to get an interview for a first-time visitor visa, up from 77 days in March.
Read original article