Taiwan Tourism emphasizes nature offerings at Vancouver event

Nature and the wild landscapes of Taiwan are front and centre in a new marketing campaign by the island nation.

Anchored by the slogan “Waves of Wonder,” the campaign gives lots of attention to the natural world in Taiwan, featuring rolling mountains, rugged coastlines, canyons and wildlife.

It replaces the “Heart of Asia” slogan used over the past decade. The new positioning statement is inspired by the contours of Taiwan’s mountainous geography and its oceans, winding roads and railways, said Alex Trup, the marketing director of Purple Media, the marketing agency in Canada for the Taiwan Tourism Administration (TTA).

Travel professionals in the Vancouver and Western Canada region came to a presentation by the TTA at a casino resort in Richmond, BC recently to hear more about the campaign and Taiwan tourism. The River Rock Casino Resort was the host of the lunchtime event, and Baxter Media’s Ted Davis and Greg Ohman were in attendance.

More support for trade 

Tour operators that offer Taiwan programs were on hand, as were reps of Taiwan’s two national airlines, China Airlines and EVA Airways, plus assorted travel advisors. They heard from Taipei-based Trup, who noted that the TTA will continue to grow its in-market presence, starting with the appointment of local staff to handle travel trade and media enquiries, plus participate in more Canadian industry events on behalf of the TTA.

For example, Vancouver-based Steve Chen has been appointed as the Canada country manager of strategic partnerships on behalf of Taiwan Tourism.

Taiwan Tourism school

Trup delivered a comprehensive overview of Taiwan tourism products and programs. For instance, there are incentives available for both individuals and companies that complete the Taiwan Tourism 101 education course 

The first 20 Canadian travel advisors who complete the course and are issued with a certificate will win Amazon gift cards worth $100 each. As well, the first 20 Canadian companies to successfully book 30 passengers travelling to Taiwan by August 31, 2024 will earn a $1,000 bonus.

“While the Taiwan Tourism School courses are free and open to anyone around the world, we are currently focused on incentivizing Canadian travel trade to complete our Taiwan Tourism 101 course,” he said.

Free half-day tours in Taiwan

Trup also described the program that offers free half-day tours to key Taiwan attractions, with an emphasis on the capital city of Taipei. These are available to transit or transfer passengers with layovers of seven to 24 hours before their next connecting flight (with valid Taiwan visas or visa-exempt entries).

The tours are four hours in length and operate in the mornings, afternoons and evenings. Some of the attractions that are covered in the tours include the National Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall, the Lungshan Temple, Daxi Old Street and Daxi Bridge, Jieyun Temple and the Nanya Night Market, to name a few.

The Taiwan Pass is an app and discounted ticket ecosystem in which foreign passport holders can purchase three days of unlimited high speed rail (HSR) usage, unlimited rides on the metro system of their choice and on one of the participating Taiwan Tourist Shuttle bus lines for visiting popular tourist sites. It was launched late in 2023 and is being actively promoted now.

 Not-to-be-missed nature

The wilder, greener side of Taiwan was brought to life through the eyes of two Canadians who have spent time off the beaten track in Taiwan. Andreas Bogner is Vancouver-region banker and avid cyclist who was looking for a lesser known, less busy cycling destination and settled on Taiwan.

He and his wife cycle-toured the island nation on quiet roads that were smooth, well-paved, safe and nearly free of traffic. They did so while video recording their trip using wide angle cameras and a drone, to dramatic effect. The finished video product, complete with soundtrack, was inspirational for anyone considering a trip to Taiwan.

Following him at the Taiwan presentation was Michael McCreesh, who lives in Taiwan and founded the tour company Taiwan Outdoors.

He offers a number of walking, hiking and cycling programs that give visitors the opportunity to explore the central reaches of Taiwan, which are mountainous and scenic, as well as the coastal regions. His package tours range in length from one to six days and are inclusive of accommodations, ranging from four-star hotels to home stays.

Amongst the tour programs are wildlife viewing, night safaris, immersive culinary/cultural experiences and round-island bicycle rides.