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Market Survey on Outbound Chinese Tourists

Travel agencies and hotels from every corner of the world are attracted by Chinese tourists. Why everybody in tourism want to attract them? How to generate profit from them?

Why Chinese tourists?

People target Chinese tourists mainly for two reasons: China’s population and growing consumption capacity. Let us take a look at these factors.

Huge number of Chinese tourists

As stated in the Annual Report of China Outbound Tourism Development 2009-2012, 70.25 million Chinese tourists traveling abroad just 2011, with a year-on-year growth of 22%.

According to the number of tourists, China’s outbound tourism market has been the largest market on the planet, 1.2 times and 3.5 times the U.S. market, the Japanese market.

According to the World Tourism Organization, there will be 100 million Chinese people travel outbound in 2020.

Generous consumption of Chinese tourists

According to the data, in 2011, Chinese tourists have become the most generous people in spending in London. The United States also benefits a lot from Chinese tourists who spend $7,107 per person on average, again topped the chart on the average cost.

We can see from the chart below, Chinese tourists spent abroad, the majority of the money is in the shopping.

Chinese tourist spending

AC Nielsen and the Pacific Asia Travel Association also pointed out that the cost of outbound Chinese tourists is ¥ 21,000 (3 300 U.S. dollars)

What’s need to know about Chinese tourists

It’s very important to know what they like if you want them to shell out money in your travel destination. However, it is very difficult to sum up all the information of the Chinese tourists, because they can be so different according to their age, region and so on.

The Chinese tourists’ regional differences (a Market Survey)

The visitors from each province in China have their own unique characteristics, but we can try to roughly divide into two groups: those from northern China and southern tourists.

According to the Nielsen China Outbound Travel Monitor, most Chinese tourists are from the south. In 2008, 10% of the residents from The South of China have visited a foreign country, much higher than that in the North.

Although the number of tourists from northern China is less than the South, northerners are in advance in the competition of spending.

As shown in Nielsen report, 10% of tourists from southern China prefer five-star hotel or holiday villa while that of northerners is 20%.

The purpose of the trip

The difference in purpose of travel makes big differences in their preference. The majority of Chinese people travel the two outbound business and / or leisure.

Business travelers concern more about the hotel business services, such as

• Internet access

• 24-hour food delivery

• ticket booking service

• Hotel service efficiency.

It means for business people, they care more convenience.

What is also interesting is that Chinese business travelers are more sensitive to price and quality than leisure travelers. It may due to the anti-corruption movement, business travelers must consider more cautious in their spending, in order to avoid any corruption scandal.

On the other hand, leisure travelers are more interested in

• entertainment and recreational facilities

• TV program in China

• luggage storage.

Senior tourists

Senior tourists usually travel in off season and that makes them quite important for travel agencies, especially during the offseason.

The average income of the Chinese people is increasing. So are the senior citizens.

By the end of 2014, there will be 200 million senior citizens living in China over 60. According to Chinese tradition, children are responsible for their parents’ expense and living, including travel. So they will have the time and money support from their children. It seems as loyal and loving to send their parents on abroad trips. These tourists are not sensitive to price but to quality.

Chinese students, tourists

“Study hard, play harder.” Chinese students study like beavers before exams. After that, they let loose as outbound tourists. Spending money from their parents, those students during the long holidays are the most enviable people. As a result, Chinese students have formed a special tourism market.

They like to travel abroad, these young teens, such as outbound routes, in particular, destinations such as Europe and Australia.

They are in for adventures tour such as

• water travel

• natural Leisure Tour

• Amusement trip

• famous university tour

They are also “generous” spenders because according to China Consumer Association, in the infamous college entrance exam, it can make or break one’s educational future; students spend their more generous than others, especially on travel, dining, and digital products.

Investment in tourism

With the soaring property prices in China (the average price of the 1square meter in Shanghai is about 40,000 Yuan or 6,400 USD; the average salary in Shanghai can only afford half a toilet!), many people choose to invest abroad in maintaining the value of their money. And in China, citizens technically only own the property but not the land, because the land belonged to the government.

So many people begin to think about purchasing a piece of land and a property in a foreign country at a fairly affordable price. We Chinese people firmly believe in owning land and properties which are a symbol of success. And on their leisure travels, they often keep an eye out for any eye-catching properties.

Source: China National Tourism Administration, National Bureau of Statistics of China

Written by Amy Wang from Daxue Consulting Market Survey China

See more about the tourism in China