China names and shames 4 tourists over Thai airport incident

AP News
|
Posted: Sep 12, 2015 2:10 AM

BEIJING (AP) — Chinese authorities have named and shamed four travelers over an incident at Bangkok's airport in which they vented their frustration by belting out the Chinese national anthem.

The four were part of a group of Chinese tourists whose flight home had been delayed by eight hours until 3:00 a.m.

When the plane arrived, they refused to board until their compensation demands were met, then broke into the national anthem amid hooting, shouts and general chaos in the departure lounge.

A 57-second clip of the incident recorded on a mobile phone circulated widely on the Internet in China, prompting an investigation by the China National Tourism Administration, which said Saturday it had added their names to its list of those accused of "uncivilized behavior."

The four "incited other travelers to disrespect public order in the airport, spoke and acted hysterically, seriously harmed the image of Chinese travelers abroad," the administration said in a statement. Their names will remain on the list for between two and three years.

While inclusion doesn't ban them from flying, the list can be checked by airlines and travel agencies, who then have the option of refusing them service. The list is public and can also be viewed by police, customs and border security agents, banks and others issuing credit.

Numerous incidents of bad behavior by Chinese tourists abroad, from fighting with air crews to defacing cultural artifacts, have drawn widespread derision in China. That prompted the administration last year to create the list, which now contains 11 names.

Others named and shamed have included a couple who poured instant noodles soaked in hot water onto flight attendant and made insults and threats in a dispute over seating. Another opened emergency doors on a domestic flight during a delay and still another had climbed onto statues of revolutionary heroes to have his photo taken.

Rising incomes and cheap flights have permitted record numbers of Chinese to travel domestically and abroad, touring scenic and cultural spots around the world. Among other complaints are line-cutting, smoking in public, littering and fouling public toilets.