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Chinese travelers moving up the value chain

Profile Photo By: H L
June 6, 2013

Chinese travelers moving up the value chain

MACAU - AUGUST 1: Tourists are seen visiting the Historic Centre of Macao on August 1, 2010 in Macau, China. The Historic Centre of Macao was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2005
MACAU - AUGUST 1: Tourists are seen visiting the Historic Centre of Macao on August 1, 2010 in Macau, China. The Historic Centre of Macao was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2005

Years ago there was a phrase in the international travel industrydescribing Chinese tourists – they “sleep cheap, shop expensive”.

Even today, shopping still dominates their spending with 34.1percent of the total while traveling, followed by transportation at21.6 percent and hotels at 14 percent, according to a reportreleased by the China Tourism Academy in April.

Though still comparatively low, Chinese spending on overseashotels last year was 4 percentage points higher than that in 2011.

Statistics show that Chinese travelers are becoming more willingto stay in medium-priced star-rated hotels rather than low-budgetaccommodations.

In 2012, almost half of Chinese tourists stayed in two or three-star international hotel chains,up 10 percentage points over 2011. Some 15 percent were willing to pay for four-star-ratedhotels or above, 7 percentage points higher than the year previous.

“The quality of accommodations is tipped as the next big thing,” said an industry observer.

But the spending sprees of some Chinese consumers overseas have generated at times eye-popping news even by international standards.

In 2012, Chinese travelers made some 83 million outbound trips, an annual rise of 15 percent.A KPMG study puts the growth at 71 percent this year.

While overseas, they spent $85 billion, double the annual revenue of Exxon Mobil. And 72percent of these travelers said that they bought luxury items on these trips.

Another report said that of all the luxury spending by Chinese consumers worldwide, awhopping 60 percent happens outside China.

A strong yuan and prohibitively high prices at home are cited as the driving forces for theirbinge buying overseas.

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Source: Liu Weifeng and Raymong Zhou (2013). Chinese travelers moving up the value chain, ChinaDaily.com.cn http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/china/2013-06/03/content_16558260.htm? published Jun 03, 2013. Viewed Jun 06, 2013.

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