Hong Kong visitors in province safe; new tours axed
All the Hongkongers visiting Sichuan in tour groups when yesterday's quake hit were safe, Travel Industry Council executive director Joseph Tung Yao-chung said.
Tung said about 130 people in six groups, organised by Wing On Travel, Hong Thai Travel, China Travel Service and Kwan Kin Travel were in the province at the time of the disaster.
Three tours to Sichuan today and tomorrow will be cancelled. About 60 people were due to join the tours, organised by Wing On, Hong Thai and EGL Tours.
People due to join eight tours to the province later this month do not yet know whether the trips will go ahead.
Eight Hongkongers were among 804 tourists evacuated from the earthquake zone, according to Sichuan's official news portal www.scol.com.cn. None was reported hurt.
Tung said Hong Kong tour groups rarely visited Yaan in Lushan county.
Wing On Travel said two of its tours were in Sichuan when the quake hit.
One group returned to Hong Kong at noon yesterday after a flight delay, while the second group of about 30 people was continuing with their trip in Jiuzhaigou, a scenic area in the north of the province.
About 20 people were slated to visit Chengdu and Jiuzhaigou today but the trip had been cancelled for safety reasons, Wing On said.
Hong Thai Travel said 34 people from two tour groups were at Mount Emei and Jiuzhaigou. The travel agency and EGL will each cancel a tour of about 20 people to Chengdu and Jiuzhaigou tomorrow.
Affected travellers can change to another tour, reserve the tour fee and join another tour within six months, or receive a refund minus administration costs.
The Immigration Department said it had not received any requests for assistance.
The Airport Authority said five of 10 flights to and from Chengdu yesterday were delayed because of the earthquake.