Photo above: Pieter Elbers, President and CEO of KLM

A Chinese tourist spends three times as much on holidays abroad as a Dutch holidaymaker. And if a Chinese entrepreneur comes to the Netherlands, they’re likely to be either doing business here or setting up a company. In both cases, it’s good for the Dutch economy.

To make it easier for Chinese tourists and business people to come to the Netherlands, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has opened visa service desks in fifteen Chinese cities. That’s also good news for KLM, which offers the most direct connections between China and the Netherlands and flies many Chinese travellers to Europe every year.

'KLM is working with the Ministry to make it as easy as possible for Chinese business people and tourists to come to the Netherlands'

Three different parties, similar wishes

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs wants to promote trade and tourism between the Netherlands and China. Chinese tourists and business people are keen to come to the Netherlands. And flights to and from China are an important to KLM’s business. Three different parties with similar wishes.

To make those wishes come true, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has made it easier for Chinese business people and tourists to obtain visas. To this end, it has opened visa service desks in fifteen Chinese cities, with a focus on places that KLM flies to directly from Amsterdam. That’s because Chinese travellers like convenience and prefer to take the shortest route. If possible they want to be able to get a visa in their home town and fly from there, rather than from another city, which might be hundreds of kilometres away. The visa service desks make it easier for Chinese business people and tourists to opt for the Netherlands as their destination in Europe. So everyone benefits: Chinese travellers, the Dutch and Chinese economies, and KLM.

As easy as possible

Pieter Elbers, President and CEO of KLM: ‘The Chinese market is very important to KLM. Together with our partners, we fly non-stop to eight different destinations in Greater China (mainland China plus Hong Kong and Taiwan). Given the many departure points in China, it’s crucial for us that the issuing of Schengen visas in those locations is properly managed. We’ve consulted closely with the Dutch embassy in China on this. Chinese travellers can already apply for visas in Chengdu, Fuzhou, Hangzhou, Shenyang, Nanjing and Jinan. The efficient issuing of visas is an important way of promoting commercial activity between the Netherlands and China. KLM is working with the Ministry to make it as easy as possible for Chinese business people and tourists to come to the Netherlands.’