Tourists tricked into paying for nothing


UNWITTING visitors are being made to pay extra to visit free public spaces at this popular destination, with some ending up forking out hundreds for nothing.

UNWITTING Chinese tourists are being made to pay $10 to visit free public spaces such as New Zealand’s Mission Bay or Western Springs by unscrupulous Auckland-based tour operators.

Tourists think they are getting a bargain by booking New Zealand tours on Chinese apps, but end up being asked to pay for free attractions such as parks, beaches and nature reserves.

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) is now advising travellers to do their research before booking tours to New Zealand, and a group of legitimate Auckland-based Chinese tour operators are planning to make a police report.

International student Jenny Xu said her aunt, who booked a $45 full-day tour through a China-based app, ended up paying more than $160.

“She was told that if she didn’t pay the fee, then she would not be allowed to get off the bus,” Xu said.

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