Scenic spots are supposed to improve their toilet facilities
The China National Tourism Administration announced last week that Orange Isle in Changsha, Hunan province, Central China, and Shenlong Gorge in Chongqing municipality, Southwest China, had lost their 5-A scenic rating, because of security concerns, overpricing, poor management, and poor facility maintenance. Beijing News commented on Monday:
The 5-A rating is arguably the most valued accreditation for Chinese scenic spots, more than 200 of which are members of the premium club. But the accreditation can be removed or suspended if the sites fail to live up to the required standards, as has happened with Orange Isle and Shenlong Gorge.
Apart from "severe safety risks", bad sanitation has played a noteworthy, if not major, role in the downgrading of the two scenic spots' ratings. Often ignored, the cleanliness or otherwise of washroom facilities always leave a lasting impression of a tourist attraction.
Admittedly, some citizens are yet to get rid of bad habits, such as not flushing toilets after use. But many scenic spots pay too little attention to the cleanliness of their toilet facilities. Problems like these are exactly what the nationwide "toilet revolution", sponsored by the China National Tourism Administration, is supposed to address and improve in the next three years.
In the past, 5-A scenic spots that didn't perform well would only receive warnings. The stricter supervision is putting tourists' interests on top of the agenda. Now as the ratings of tourist sites will depend on how well they are managed. They should shift their focus from making profits to better serving visitors.