And You Creations had the opportunity to travel to Seoul, South Korea this month as a part of its commitment to making customers from all over the world feel welcomed on tours!
Around 2010, businesses in Hawaii started noticing a surge in travelers from Korea. And according to the Hawaii Tourism Association, the number of travelers continues to rise year by year.
And You Creations started efforts a few years ago to increase the tours’ multilingual efforts, such as adding translations of all guide speeches, translating its websites and initiating marketing in Korea with a team called MKO Corporation.
The spirit of Aloha is at the heart of And You Creations tours. And a big part of embodying that spirit is being a warm and gracious host.
MKO has helped And You Creations tremendously in understanding the desires and needs of Korean guests. But there’s no better way to make a person feel more welcomed than to understand where they’re coming from.
2019 ModeTour Travel Mart
And You Creations and MKO teamed up to help represent Hawaii and spread the beauty of its culture at a travel expo hosted by Korean travel agent ModeTour.
The event took place in the bustling business district of Seoul at the massive COEX center from Sept. 5 to Sept. 8. Booths displayed the grandest attractions from every destination in the world – from Milan, to Ireland, to Egypt – over the building’s nearly 50,000 square feet of space.
In the United States, one might expect to smell different foods from all of these countries as they walked around. But in Korea, it’s all about the games! Prospective travelers challenged themselves in how fast they could shake a shaker, or stomp on a stomping pad, with enthusiastic emcees announcing the winners to the sound of applause.
The And You Creations booth offered its own share of competition. Visitors to the booth could play ring toss with a dolphin-shaped post, participate in a social media giveaway or immerse themselves into a virtual reality experience of the tours.
Take a peek at what they saw by watching our 360-degree video experience of Island and You!
Some expo participants had been to Hawaii before, but many hadn’t. As the MKO team explained the wonders of swimming with dolphins in the wild, exploring rainforest waterfalls and sampling local foods around Oahu, many people’s eyes lit up.
There were many incredible moments at the expo, but helping one vibrant couple plan their dream honeymoon to Hawaii was a great highlight. Along with helping them to book a Dolphins and You and Island and You tour, the And You Creations and MKO team also outlined a whole itinerary for them.
The very personal connections made were very meaningful for the whole team. So it’s safe to say the event was a great success!
Gaining an understanding of South Korea
But after all of that time sharing with Koreans why Hawaii should be on their bucket list, it was time for the tables to turn and for us to experience why Korea is such a special place. And everything we saw just reinforced how well-suited our tours are for the Korean traveler!
A Passion for the Environment
The And You Creations was inspired by Seoul’s great coordinated efforts for a more sustainable lifestyle. In fact, South Korea’s capital was rated the most sustainable city in Asia on the 2015 Sustainable Cities Index.
After decades of globalization and development led to high emissions and poor air quality, Seoul changed pace entirely. It created a ‘green belt’ around the city to limit urbanization. Additionally, Seoul placed charging stations all around the city for electric cars and created city-wide initiatives to inform citizens about recycling.
As a certified sustainable tour company, And You Creations shares this dedication to environmental health and future generations.
A Deep Appreciation for Culture
Even in the midst of the skyscrapers that marked the business district of Seoul, tributes to the country’s history could be found. A commitment to Buddhist virtues and traditions like tea time persist.
And if there’s one thing that’s certain, it’s that Korean people know good food! Many people travel to Korea for the cuisine alone. Spicy soups, flavorful kimchee, delicious barbeque and gourmet desserts can be found all around the city. Even coffee is known for its richness in Seoul.
And You Creations is sure Korean guests would appreciate the deep history of hula or the unique taste of Kona coffee beans.
A Love for Nature and Adventure
More than anything, it was clear that people in Korea valued nature. Outdoor equipment stores like The North Face had large stores in the city to supply the adventurers in the city.
For instance, just outside of Seoul’s city limits is a stunning natural area called Bukhansan National Park. It draws hundreds of hikers to its trails daily. One can see why, as the views from Seoul’s tallest peaks are breathtaking.
This similarity in pure and stunning nature makes Hawaii and Korea the perfect mutual destinations!