On February 11th, a Chinese couple from Zhejiang, while shopping at the famous high-end retail group Galeries Lafayettes on a Paris tour, was accused of using a counterfeit note, then brought to a police station, questioned and searched “insultingly” then accused a second time at the same cashier of using a fake banknote, although it had been proven genuine by a bank expert.
The French company duly apologized and offered the couple another Paris tour, but it looks like the China Tourism Association is not appeased and here’s what its spokesperson had to say on Saturday:
“We are discontent and regretted that Chinese tourists were treated so rudely in Paris. We suggest travelers not to go shopping in the store before the incident is properly handled.”
Will it dampen the friendly diplomatic relations that the two countries have enjoyed so far? Will it question the business opportunities that the Galerie Lafayettes group was looking for last December, planning to open stores in Beijing and Macau?
As one netizen wrote in a comment,
“You know, I once heard from a lady who had visited Paris. She found French so rude that she complained to a concierge at a hotel she stayed. He replied, “Nothing personal, Madame. We always do it to one another.””
Maybe the French should learn from the Chinese how to deal with counterfeit banknotes – just try another one!