This summer, Chinese sports enthusiasts are returning to arenas to cheer on their favorite teams and players after the country’s borders reopened earlier this year.
Major European sporting events are returning to full spectator capacity after pandemic-related restrictions.
The final of the French Open tennis tournament took place as scheduled on Sunday in front of a roaring crowd ~ a stark contrast to the delays and restricted access to the Grand Slam event in 2020 and 2021. The event, also known as Roland-Garros, attracted spectators from around the world this year, including Chinese tourists cheering on players such as Li Zheng, Shang Juncheng and Wu Yibing.
Alibaba Group’s online travel service Fliggy is helping Chinese tourists plan their trips.
“Fliggy is excited…to bring all the Chinese travelers to attend this event,” Ada Xu, Fliggy’s Regional Director for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, told Alizila.
Xu shares in this video how Fliggy helped Chinese tourists access sports events during the pandemic and has a full pipeline of sports events now that travel is normalizing.
Below is a transcript of this video, edited for clarity and brevity
Alison Tudor-Ackroyd: For the sports fans out there, what have we got in store this year? What’s Fliggy going to bring us?
Ada Xu: Last year, for the FIFA World Cup in Qatar, Fliggy, in partnership with travel agencies MyComm and Visit Qatar, we created exclusive experiences for Fliggy members. But at that time, remember the border was closed, so we targeted overseas Chinese and it was very successful.
And another example is with Macau’s Sports Bureau and Macau Tourism Bureau, we livestreamed the Dragon Boat Festival.
Alison Tudor-Ackroyd: I love watching Dragon Boats.
Ada Xu: In France this year, we have very important events, for example, the Roland-Garros tennis event. We have in September the Rugby World Cup, and, of course, in 2024, the exciting Paris Olympic Games.
And, of course, Fliggy is very excited to bring Chinese travelers to attend this event.
Alison Tudor-Ackroyd: Thank you so much for your insights Ada and it’s great to be back here in Paris with you.
Ada Xu: Thank you Alison for being here.
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