A charter flight with 109 tourists aboard arrived yesterday afternoon in Lhasa from Singapore, becoming the first nonstop overseas charter flight for tourists to Tibet.
A Singaporean travel agency rented the flight by Air China, China's top airline company, for this tour, according to the Tibet Tourism Bureau.
The nonstop flight marked that Lhasa, the regional capital, has become the direct destinations of overseas tourists, said Bazho, director of the bureau.
Overseas tourists usually have to stop at Chengdu, capital of southwest China's Sichuan Province, or Beijing before they fly to Tibet.
The flight will spur a new trend among overseas tourists to visit Tibet, said Bazho.
The 109 tourists will stay in Tibet for nine days and then go to Xining, capital of Qinghai Province, by train on the Qinghai-Tibet Railway that began operation on July 1.
Tibet has seen an increasing number of overseas tourists in the past decade. In 2005, the region received 121,000 overseas tourists, a 26.6 percent increase from 2004.
(Xinhua News Agency October 4, 2006)