Beijing Municipal Bureau of Culture and Tourism, Mastercard join hands to relaunch Priceless Beijing

2024-06-14

On June 12, the Beijing Municipal Bureau of Culture and Tourism, in partnership with Mastercard, held a ceremony at the Zhengyici Peking Opera Theatre to jointly announce the relaunch of Priceless Beijing. This is the third cooperation agreement between the two partners since 2012 to enhance tourism. This agreement reaffirms their shared dedication to delivering unforgettable Priceless Experiences for inbound travelers to China.

In his speech, Yang Shuo, director-general of Beijing Municipal Bureau of Culture and Tourism, stated that the government places great importance on the development of inbound tourism and has introduced a series of measures to enhance international services, including improving the experience for travelers by updating the tourism portal website and optimizing payment services across the dining, accommodation, transportation, sightseeing, shopping, entertainment, healthcare, and education sectors. Since this marks the third collaboration, the partnership between culture and tourism and finance is believed to be beneficial in the new context of building a leading tourism nation. By partnering with Mastercard to appeal to tourist preferences for lifestyle experiences, digital communications, self-service options and more, the government looks forward to further developing Beijing as a premier tourism and retail destination for travelers around the world and serving the people’s pursuit of a better life.

Raja Rajamannar, chief marketing and communications officer of Mastercard, said: “Connecting people to their passions, their purpose and each other is our focus at Mastercard, and nothing bridges cultures as powerfully as travel. We are thrilled to partner with the Beijing Municipal Bureau of Culture and Tourism to relaunch Priceless Beijing, unlocking unforgettable experiences for countless future visitors to this captivating city.”

“As an ancient capital that captures the essence of Chinese traditional culture, Beijing is full of vigour and vitality while remaining quaint and graceful, beckoning visitors from all over the world,” said Dennis Chang, executive vice president and division president, Greater China. Chang added, “In recent years, the travel environment for international inbound visitors has improved significantly, aided in part by Mastercard and the Beijing Municipal Bureau of Culture and Tourism. As innovative cooperation projects such as Priceless Beijing continue to expand, Mastercard looks forward to introducing more payment facilitation measures to offer consumers even more choices in how they pay and receive payments, helping to better connect China and the world by supporting tourism recovery.”

Following its relaunch, Priceless Beijing will adopt a “green” theme, leveraging the official channels of the Beijing Municipal Bureau of Culture and Tourism and the Mastercard platform (Priceless.com). The initiative will cover four main areas: dining, entertainment, culture, and sustainable development. By selecting attractive benefits and exciting activities, it aims to actively promote Beijing’s high-quality cultural resources and tourism products both domestically and internationally. Additionally, it seeks to enhance payment convenience and diversify payment methods, thereby building a bridge between China and the world.

Priceless Beijing was officially launched by Mastercard in 2011, aiming to provide a unique and exciting tourism experience in Beijing for Mastercard’s 3.4 billion cardholders worldwide. In 2012, Beijing Tourism Development Commission signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Mastercard to utilize the Priceless Beijing platform to attract more global tourists to visit and travel in Beijing. In 2016, the two parties signed a second Memorandum of Understanding and launched the global promotion campaign “Great Wall Heroes”.

Recently, to implement General Secretary Xi Jinping’s directives on tourism work and to promote Beijing as a global tourism destination while supporting the high-quality development of inbound tourism, Beijing Municipal Bureau of Culture and Tourism has launched a series of initiatives. These include the “2024 Beijing Inbound Tourism Incentive and Support Fund Project” and the “Beijing Expansion of Cultural and Tourism New Consumption Incentive Project”. Additionally, the government organized Beijing Inbound Tourism Development Conference, inviting international travel agents and media representatives to Beijing to inspect cultural and tourism resources and establish a platform for global tourism industry cooperation. Furthermore, collaborations have been formed with enterprises in tourism, exhibitions, airlines, airports, and other fields to participate jointly in major international tourism exhibitions and host promotional events for Beijing’s cultural and tourism offerings both domestically and abroad.

As part of the Priceless Experiences, Mastercard has long been committed to partnering with various stakeholders including Beijing Municipal Bureau of Culture and Tourism to provide convenient and worry-free payment services for international tourists visiting China. Last year, Mastercard launched the project of Explore China with Mastercard, focusing on enhancing payment convenience for inbound tourists, expanding acceptance of foreign cards, and promoting diversification of payment methods and card issuance markets. In early May, Mastercard’s joint venture, Mastercard Network, officially opened, introducing a new “China Mastercard” bank card product usable both domestically and internationally. This initiative aims to attract an increasing number of Chinese cardholders to experience the limitless charm of Priceless Beijing.

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