'2nd wave' of Chinese tourism attracts global attention
Updated: 2015-03-09 08:03
People gather during Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations in front of the Edificio Espana on Plaza de Espana in Madrid on Feb 22. [Photo/AFP]
The world's biggest tourism trade fair opened to visitors last week with a workshop on Chinese outbound tourism in Berlin.
The discussion at the International Tourismus-Boerse focused on China's "second wave" of outbound tourists, and their new destinations and consumption patterns.
Panelists from Europe and Asia exchanged views on the question: "How can established destinations react, and what will the future of Chinese outbound tourism look like?"
In 2014, the number of Chinese tourists traveling abroad increased by 19.5 percent year-on-year to 109 million, according to the China National Tourism Administration.
"China is the world's largest outbound market since 2012," says the Madrid-based United Nations World Tourism Organization.
During the recent Chinese Lunar New Year holiday, 5.18 million Chinese－10 percent more than during the previous year's festival－took trips to Thailand, Japan, the United States and Europe, where they were not surprised to see Mandarin-speaking staff in shopping malls and Chinese TV programs in hotels.
"Now the whole European industry is paying greater attention to Chinese tourists' shopping habits and consumption," says Yu Jin, chief operations officer of Caissa Touristic (Group) AG in Hamburg.