Couple criticized for damaging image of Chinese tourists

Updated: 2016-10-21 08:05

By Shi Xiaofeng in Hangzhou(China Daily)

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The Ningbo Municipal Tourism Administration posted a notice on its Weibo account on Wednesday calling on Chinese tourists to adopt civilized behavior when traveling abroad.

A man, surnamed Li, and his wife were part of a tour group that began a six-day tour in Japan on Oct 17. Before departing the Toyoko Inn Nagoya, Li found a new electronic toilet seat cover in a box under their bed.

Li said he thought it might have been left behind by another tourist, which is why he took it, but it turned out that it belonged to the hotel.

According to Yang Shipei, manager of Shanghai Spring and Autumn International Travel Service's Ningbo branch, which organized the tour, the hotel contacted its tour escort.

When he found out it belonged to the hotel, Li said he regretted his behavior. He took it back to the hotel the same day with the help of the tour guide and wrote a letter of apology. The hotel forgave Li for his actions, Yang said.

But news of the incident went viral, arousing the anger of Chinese netizens, who criticized Li for discrediting the image of Chinese tourists.

According to, a provincial leading news website, criticism from netizens amounting to what it called a "cyber-manhunt" led to the couple deciding to leave the tour, adding that one of them had already sent a resignation letter.

The tour group is scheduled to arrive back in China on Saturday.

China has taken a series of measures to eliminate uncivilized behavior by Chinese tourists when abroad.

"We should all abide by the local laws, customs and habits when abroad to protect the international image of Chinese tourists" said Gu Weiwei, deputy director of Ningbo Municipal Tourism Administration.