TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A woman from Hong Kong on Wednesday (May 24) became Taiwan's two millionth visitor and also won the lucky draw for a NT$5,000 (US$162) travel stipend for foreign travelers.
As Taiwan seeks to rebuild its tourism industry after the pandemic, on March 25, it reported its millionth visitor for 2023. The Tourism Bureau in a press release said after Taiwan opened its borders to independent travelers from Hong Kong and Macau on Feb. 20, the number of visitors from the two special administrative regions quickly rose.
In April, 101,800 travelers arrived from the two territories, representing the largest source of foreign visitors that month. Of the 1.62 million tourists who came to Taiwan from January to April, the largest number came from Hong Kong, followed by South Korea and Japan.
On Wednesday, Hong Kong citizen Chan Yee Ling became the two millionth visitor this year. Tseng Hsien-wen (曾憲文), director of the Tourist Service Center at the Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport, personally presented Chan with an OhBear mascot doll and a gift bag.
Taiwan Tourism Bureau staff join Chen and her family for the photo. (Tourism Bureau photo)
Chan said that this was her third visit to Taiwan and this was the first time she had taken her family on a trip since the pandemic. She said with surprise and joy, "I not only won the NT$5,000 consumption subsidy on this trip, but I was also lucky enough to be the two millionth tourist!"
Chan expects to stay in Taiwan for six days and mainly plans to travel around northern Taiwan to places such as Taipei City's Beitou District and Taipei Zoo. She says she cannot wait to take her child to enjoy the "delicious food and beautiful scenery of Taiwan."
On May 1, the Tourism Bureau launched a subsidy scheme titled "Taiwan the Lucky Land," in which NT$5,000 will be provided to 500,000 foreign tourists who win a lucky draw over the course of three years from May 1, 2023 to June 30, 2025. To jump-start Taiwan's tourism, the NT$5,000 incentive will be handed out to 250,000 winners this year, while in 2024, the prize will be awarded to 150,000 travelers, and in 2025, there will be 100,000 recipients.