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28 Nov, 2017

Ctrip, China’s leading OTA and Big Bus Tours, the world’s largest privately-owned operator of open-top sightseeing bus tours, signed a strategic partnership on 17 November 2017.

This deal will provide Chinese tourists with a better destination experience and a more streamline service. As part of the cooperation, both parties will work closely to deliver an excellent service to customers using Big Bus Tours’ API technology, eradicating the need for printed vouchers for a more customer friendly mobile ticket solution. In addition, Ctrip and Big Bus Tours will be working together on joint marketing campaigns and product diversification.

Attending the signing ceremony were Mr Weiping Liao (Vice General Manager, Activities Business Unit, Ctrip), Ms Yvonne Zhang (Area Director, Activities Business Unit, Ctrip), Mr Omid Golshan (Executive Vice President - Global Growth, Big Bus Tours) and Ms Ana Araque (Head of Global Sales - EMEA, Big Bus Tours). 

Yvonne Zhang, Ctrip, comments “We are proud to be the first OTA in China to sell Big Bus Tours globally. This partnership will solve one of the major challenges for FIT travellers- which is local transportation combined with a sightseeing experience. Big Bus Tours products enable outbound travellers to obtain a more economical, reliable and flexible way to explore the destination and discover the local gems each city has to offer”.

Omid Golshan, Big Bus Tours said, “We are delighted to partner with Ctrip, their innovative, forward thinking and deep customer insights allow us to shape our global product and marketing to ensure that we are providing the best service for our Chinese travellers. Our carefully selected routes and bus stops promote freedom to travel to all major sites and landmarks, and make customers feel right at home with translated commentary including Mandarin in some of our world famous cities.

He added “We are focused on providing technology driven solutions, which include faster access to travel products as we adapt to the fast-evolving digital needs of international travellers. The API technology in particular, will help to improve the full customer experience from booking through to redemption, in particular for mobile customers, as the QR codes can simply be scanned by our staff from their mobile phones as they hop on one of our tours, eradicating the need for printed vouchers”. 

Ctrip has committed to distribute Big Bus Tours on a global basis in all 19 cities, 13 of which have already been launched. 

“We are excited to be offering more products and a more convenient ticketing process via API 

integration. In addition, consumers can also enjoy the many free attraction inclusions that are already part of the Big Bus Tours experience.” said Zhang

The cooperation between Big Bus Tours and Ctrip is of great significance. Big Bus Tours is proud to have one of the most powerful bus resources in the industry and a unique concept of urban tourism, while Ctrip has one of the most robust one-stop travel resources in the market. 

Xiaojiang Yu, CEO Activities Business Unit, Ctrip, comments “Internationalization is a new growth point for future development. Ctrip will further develop overseas markets and provide consumers with better products and more personalized services. Ctrip will increase the pace of internationalization in the future and establish further reliable global cooperation partners” 

According to Ctrip’s data, nearly 90% mainland China travellers to Hong Kong are FIT. Compared to the high cost of hiring cars, taxis, trouble of checking local bus route and difficultness of parking, hop-on, hop-off buses are the most ideal way of exploring the city. 

 “It’s a very comfortable way to explore the city for a newcomer. It provides 360 degree views of the city and is very convenient with Mandarin commentary, and you can hop-on and hop-off as many times as you like.” As reviewed by Ctrip customer.

As part of this “Preferred Partner" status both businesses will work collaboratively in developing leading customer propositions. All Big Bus Tours products will be available on the Ctrip website and both parties will work together to create more product options in line with customer needs. 

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