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Shanghai Daily Travel China

The Shanghai Daily is the only English daily newspaper in Shanghai. the Shanghai Daily Travel China section, featured myself and my consultant Travel advice.

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Shanghai Daily Travel article

Dominion Post story Travel-the-Real-China

A China Travel Website My Scary Start

My China travel website - How it all started for me…and the lifestyle I enjoy now.

Here is the secret of how I turned my fascination and enthusiasm for travel into an enjoyable and rewarding internet consultancy - a move that changed and enhanced my life. In essence, my "hobby" is now helping to support me, instead of me supporting it.

With the help of a company called Site Build It (SBI), I now have my own travel web-site and a sustainable enterprice.With the help of this web-site making company anyone can do this , turn a passion into a satisfying internet business.

In just a few short months I went from not knowing one bit about "How to build a web-site " to now having an internet venture with over 30 pages ranked within the 10 on Yahoo and MSN search engines and ranked 12 in Google. (Thats is good going for an amateur)

Enquiries for my services are coming in from all over the world. I now have many satisfied customers whose Real-China holidays I have adviced on have gone smoothly and who have enjoyed their Real-China experience. I am personally very pleased , and now receive viable compensation from my "scary experiment"

The Background

After exploring around the world for over 15 years (including 3 months backpacking the back-blocks of China), I returned to New Zealand to become a salesman for a muli-national electronics company with offices in New Zealand.

I must have been doing ok, because I was head-hunted by another large electronics muli-national, to help establish a regional headquarters in Shanghai for servicing the Asia-Pacific region.

My job was to set up and train distributor-based sales forces within Asia-Pacific, and implementing procedures to develop each cell into an effective wholesale agent for my company's products.

I was responsible for the AP markets of Taiwan, Japan, Korea, Thailand, Philippines, Singapore, Indonesia and Pakistan and became a "frequent traveller" thoughout the region. I also made regular trips to the US and Europe; I was "on the road" a lot....Great Fun.

Actually it was... I enjoyed my 2 years contract and learned a lot about business, people, different cultures etc.

However all good things come to an end. With all the procedures in place and the peolpe and businesses developing nicely, I had done myself out of a job and my contract was not renewwed.  So ...time to move on.

I liked Shanghai so much I decided to stay for a while to see what turned up. Maybe it was time for a career change. Maybe it was time to try something really different.

I have always enjoyed traveling and have now lived as many years out of New Zealand, as I have lived in New Zealand.

I have a passion for travel and seeing new places, and I saw China Tourism as a growing business… maybe this would be an opportunity for me.

Just through my observations I noticed that booking tours and dealing with Chinese travel agents was difficult; it was obvious to me that here in Shanghai there was a lack of understanding of Western traveling needs and requirements, with plenty of misunderstanding and confusion.

I noticed this lead to disappointment and frustration for many travelers wanting to arrange holidays and trips around China – especially those folks seeking experiences in the “old & authentic” China .

I looked at many China travel web-sites and whilst all were full of information, most gave me the impression of being in the “mass-production” travel business.

Visiting Real-China is a great (and quickly vanishing) experience; it’s a shame so many people have not been fully satisfied with their tours because of complacent planning and “formula” itineraries.

I had backpacked through the highways & by-ways of China for many months and had experienced a great deal of the essential and basic China, so I thought, what about an experience-based, personal-plan travel site on China?

Here is what I did: -

With no experience of building a web-site, I asked myself… What do I do first?

I started with plenty of research…on “How to”…including where else...on the internet?

I came across many “How to” sites. However I kept coming back regularly to one; a web-site business development system called Site Build It!

Site Build It! (SBI!) sells itself as an all-in-one site-building, site-hosting, site-promoting suite of tools. It supposedly eliminates all the confusing technical complexities and exhausting manual labor involved in building and promoting a site, and leaves you with the fun part - creating content.

To cut a long story, of months of research short, I determined this site building system could actually help me build a little web-site to showcase China, and have the flexibility to enable me to make it in the style I thought would work for intrepid travelers who might read it and find my knowledge helpful for their own travel plans.

You build a web-site according to their system and the guidelines laid out before you by Site Build It, and hey presto, you are supposed to have a successful site. (“Well, that’s what it said in the advert”.)

I was still not a believer; however all the research I had done indicated something was different about this SBI set-up.

I looked for proof and results that the system works and has worked for others.

I decided - just do it....

If it works, to pay a few hundred dollars for a web-site that could pay for itself at least and provide me with much satisfaction, would be a reasonable outlay.

If it didn’t work, then it’s only a few hundred dollars, not the thousands, business set-up and infrastructure costs would entail.

So.... What is my situation at present? My life has now changed…for the better.

1– I adviced on  a travel tour the first week the site was up.

2 – I now set up and arrange local tours for expatriates living in China, and have expanded my “territories” to include major cities, popular sightseeing, short “side trips”, and connections with Chinese festival occasions.

3 – My site traffic has increase 20% every month since my site was launched, with potential internet clients now visiting from further a field.

4– I am the travel writer for a local Expat magazine here in Shanghai - “Shanghai Scene”.

5 – My corporate days are over and my life is more relaxed.

6 – I have the time to travel and see more of this great country of China.

I can openly and honestly say “Thanks SBI”, for providing me with a system to build, maintain and grow an economically viable and personally satisfying web-site.

My own passion for traveling, seeing others enjoy this wonderful country, and receiving great feedback from my clients, has made it easy to write the content for my site.

The system is easy and very well laid out, and I can now say it is the best venture I have become involved with.


It really does work - if you put the effort in.

Nothing in life is easy; however I now enjoy working in an industry I love and can share with others

Travel, Read the paper, Sit in a coffee shop, Chat to tourists.

I now enjoy quite a different life compared to my corporate days.

If you would like to know more about my China Travel website, please contact me directly and we can have a chat.

Happy Traveling



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