The Ctrip-sponsored CTW Chinese Tourist Welcome Awards showcases industry innovation from both large and small organisations

by Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Georg Arlt FRGS FRAS

Sponsored for the first time by leading Chinese OTA Ctrip, the 15th annual instalment of the CTW Chinese Tourist Welcome Awards took place at ITB China in Shanghai last week on Thursday, May 17th, 2018.

The ceremony was hosted by both COTRI Director Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Georg Arlt and Victor Tseng, VP of Corporate Affairs and Chief Communications Officer at Ctrip.

Recognising high achievement in the field of Chinese outbound tourism, this year’s ceremony saw the highest ever level of presentations delivered by winners of Gold awards, with almost all recipients showing not only customised videos along with PowerPoint presentations, but also being able to demonstrate evidence of an impressive range of activities offered to customers, as well as holistic long-term approaches to the market.

Notably, all of the 18 awards – delivered across five categories were collected in person – with some winners having travelled from as far away as Europe especially in order to be in attendance.

While one winner expressing that they were initially a little disappointed to be only earning a Bronze award, having seen the standard of the presentations made by those being awarded with Gold they conceded that they understood the gap in the level of activities for the Chinese market between them and those winning the top prizes and felt accordingly inspired to further invest in their services and seek out a higher-level award in the future.

Having Ctrip as official partner for the CTW Awards is a strong reflection of the level to which the programme has reached and the company is set to return in the same role for an even bigger event next year. This will be held at ITB China, following the laudable support offered at this year’s fair.

All in all, the 15-year lifespan on the CTW Awards is a reflection of the development of the market itself: while in the early years prizes could be earned simply for tailoring any services to Chinese customers, we are now seeing leading companies concentrating fully on this source market and working in an integrated manner towards goals such as targeted product adaption for defined market segments, customised service quality improvements, marketing, and instalment of Chinese payment methods, and other such measures.

Nevertheless, even as the market grows at such a pace, the CTW Awards are continuing to honour not only big players such as the WTCF and Merlin Entertainments, but also small companies with original ideas such as Bewei 55° as well as established, yet innovative institutions and companies such as Royal Greenwich Museums or Dan Hotels Group.


For a list of the full winners, please see the following link.