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Pavilions put avoiding lines on the menu

[ 2010-08-09 11:08]     字号 [] [] []  
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Visitors have a new way to sidestep spending hours in a queue to get into popular attractions, since some European pavilions started to allow visitors to skip lines after eating at their restaurants.

The Spain Pavilion now allows tourists who buy 298 yuan ($44) tickets to dine in its restaurant to enter the pavilion without waiting.

"Since the launch of the new service, the tickets are sold out in the morning and sometimes we are fully booked a few days in advance," said Yang Yue, press officer for the Spain Pavilion.

Yang said that organizers hope the recently launched promotion will continue to attract more customers to the restaurant and visitors to the pavilion.

"Having dinner at the restaurant is very enjoyable and being able to visit the pavilion after dinner without having to line up is a bonus," said Guo Xinting, of Zhejiang province, who bought tickets for dinner so she could see the pavilion.

The Belgium-EU Pavilion also allows patrons of its restaurant to visit the pavilion without having to queue, but it does not advertise the service to avoid being overwhelmed by customers.

"It is just an extra convenience for customers of the restaurant to enjoy the pavilion and the food," said Song Song, assistant event and PR manager for the pavilion.

Most European pavilions that feature restaurants in Zone C, including Austria, Norway and Turkey, also offer customers this option.

Some visitors find it unfair that others are, essentially, able to buy their way into pavilions, but there is little they can do about it.

"Although it was inconvenient for us to wait in line for hours, it cost them a few hundred yuan, which I don't want to spend on a meal," said Huang Li, of Shanghai, as she waited outside the Norway Pavilion.

Other pavilions, like Germany, have decided against offering the service to customers who dine in the restaurant or have drinks at the bar.

"The restaurant and the pavilion have separate functions to meet tourists' demands and the restaurant shouldn't be used as a tool to attract more customers and gain higher profits," said Zheng Lu, press assistant at the Germany Pavilion.

Zheng said that no matter how much customers spend on meals at the restaurant, they have to wait to see the pavilion like everyone else.


(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Pavilions put avoiding lines on the menu

Pavilions put avoiding lines on the menu

Todd Balazovic is a reporter for the Metro Section of China Daily. Born in Mineapolis Minnesota in the US, he graduated from Central Michigan University and has worked for the China daily for one year.