Israel seeking Chinese-speaking tour guides


( With a boom in tourism from China, Israel is looking to boost the number of Chinese-speaking tour guides, and officials are hoping university students to fill the void.

The flag of the People's Republic of China. Credit: Wikimedia Commons. 

Israel’s Ministry of Tourism will offer grants for undergraduate or graduate students of East Asia studies to become licensed tour guides suitable for Chinese groups.

The Tourism Ministry will give nearly $4,000 to each student who takes the stringent tour guide licensing course to raise the number Chinese-speaking tour guides.

Israel has made significant investments in encouraging the trend of increasing tourism from China, including the approval of multiple entry visas for tourists and the cancellation of group visa fees.

Incoming tourism from China grew 43 percent from 2014 to 2015. The Tourism Ministry estimates 100,000 China residents will visit Israel by 2018.

Posted on September 19, 2016 .