Covid-19 test may discourage visitors from coming to Macau

Although many mainland internet users say they are intrigued about visiting Macau because of the SAR government’s 290 million pataca consumption coupon scheme, Covid-19 tests may have discouraged some such individuals from making the trip.
Starting from yesterday and lasting until December 31, WeChat users verified with a mainland identification card can redeem coupons for hotels and shopping to use in Macau. The SAR government is compensating travelers with 290 million patacas in the form of this coupon scheme.
A Weibo post made by the People’s Daily about the coupons has gained over 5,000 likes from mainland netizens, with the majority expressing a desire to visit Macau; however, some are “frightened” by the Covid-19 test.
“A Covid-19 test is required. I am afraid of it. I will not travel to Macau,” one commented. Another wrote, “I will go [to Macau] only if a Covid-19 test is not needed.” A third said, “I need to take the Covid-19 test which is only valid for one week, which is indeed troublesome.”
Covid-19 tests cost approximately 120 yuan in most mainland provinces. The price may go up to 200 yuan in some places.
According to a report by Eastmoney, a mainland news outlet, on August 11, the day China’s State Council announced the gradual resumption of issuing tourism visas to Macau, mainland travel service app Ctrip recorded a skyrocket surge in terms of searches for Macau-related products.
On August 11, Ctrip App’s global shopping entry recorded a growth of 120% in searches for merchandise and coupons for Macau-related shopping.
Even though these statistics indicate that the mainland market is reacting positively in terms of visiting Macau, there are still factors discouraging them from acting on their interest.
Besides the potentially troublesome Covid-19 test, mainland visitors may also find it inconvenient to travel because of the health code requirements.
Currently, different mainland provinces use different health codes in addition to accepting the nation-wide health code. When a mainlander travels between different provinces, that person must register for each province’s health code or simply use the nation-wide one.
Passengers flying directly from any mainland city to Macau must present a negative Covid-19 test result. These visitors will not be able to switch their code to the Macau health code if their code is not registered in Guangdong province.
Tomorrow marks the last waiting day for some residents in Guangdong province who have applied for a travel endorsement to Macau. This means Guangdong may hold the biggest potential for visitors during the National Day holiday.
On August 26, the Guangdong police department resumed the issuing of travel endorsements to Guangdong residents, including those holding a permanent residency of any Guangdong city as well as those from other mainland provinces with temporary residence in Guangdong.

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