Inside Out China – Increase in Customized Travel

Natasha Martin | April 20, 2018

The top trends from the Asia Adventure Market with 40urs & Bannikin:


1. Europe an Increasingly Popular Destination for Chinese Tourists

After Asia itself, Europe attracts the most Chinese tourists (9.3% outbound departures from China go to Europe). A new report by CTrip found that Europe is preferred by women and they are typically younger, with 77% being under the age of 50. Customized travel to Europe is increasingly popular, especially in UK, Italy, France, Russia and Greece. Customized itineraries in Europe last on average 12 days, encompass two countries and spend RMB 2500 per day.

Source: CTrip


2. Second Tier Cities Growing in Importance

Shanghai, Beijing and Guangzhou remain the most important departure points for outbound Chinese tourists, but T2 cities are increasing in importance. Cities like Harbin, Wuhan, Fuzhou, Nanjing and

Hangzhou now account for 50% of outbound departures.

Source: COTRI

Check out this very handy explanation of the various tiers of cities by the South China Morning post:


3. Increase in Customized Travel

A clear trend towards customised travel is emerging in the Chinese market.  Whereas in the past, most outbound travelers would select group tours, they are increasingly seeking bespoke options. A plethora of online providers makes creating a custom tour each. CTrip has a branch called ‘CTrip Customized Travel’ which has seen user demand increase by 120,000 per month.


4. Red Tourism

Ever heard of Red Tourism? It refers to holidays that focus on visiting socialist or communist countries, specifically to learn about their history. Russia is taking advantage of the interest in Red Tourism with their ‘China Friendly’ project, which aims to create improved services for the Chinese tourists. In 2016, about 1M Chinese tourists visited Russia and they hope to increase that number going forward.

Source: SCMP

Does your destination have a link to communist or socialist history? It may be a story that your Chinese visitors are interested in hearing!


5. Local Chinese as Influencers

A study by New Zealand found that New Zealanders of Chinese descent spend significant time exploring their new home, spending a total of $315M. Their spend is higher than other domestic tourists because they often don’t have family to stay with when travelling.  They then recommend destinations and experiences to friends and family, and even strangers online.

Countries with large Chinese communities should consider catering to this market for their potential to influence as well as their spending power.

Source: New Zealand Tourism


Want to keep on top of the trends from the Asia Adventure Market?

Bannikin and 40urs help navigate the market by sharing the latest trends delivered exclusively through our WeChat group. Email to access the group and to learn more about what we’re doing in Asia.