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There are so many Chinese tourists filing into the duty free shops of Seoul and other South Korean tourism hotspots that the South Korean government has decided to designate special “foreign-only” stores to accommodate them, according to Jing Daily.The number of Chinese tourists in South Korea is huge, and growing quickly.
There were 919,937 mainland Chinese visitors to the country in the first six months of 2011, an increase of 11.5 per cent year-over-year.
According to Jing Daily:
While still outnumbered by the 1,395,614 Japanese tourists who traveled to South Korea over the same period, it’s important to note that Japanese arrivals showed a 4.3 per cent decrease year-over-year, primarily due to the natural disasters there this spring.
The Chinese are also freewheeling shoppers, spending an average of $1,547 each per visit, compared to $1,084 spent by each Japanese tourist, Jing Daily reported.
The shops are slated to start opening in 2012.