The world’s biggest tourist market is still growing significantly, with a new study reporting that Chinese travellers have increased their travel expenditure by 40% in 2018 over last year.
More significantly, Australia was revealed to be the most popular country for first-time visits, with a favourable exchange and strong economy fuelling the growth.
According to the Hotels.com Chinese International Travel Monitor (CITM), Chinese millennials born after 1990 are driving the growth, increasing their travel spend by a whopping 80% and committing more than a third (36%) of their income to travel.
In 2017, Chinese travellers spent a record $10.4 billion dollars on their Aussie vacations, but contrary to some opinions, were less interested in shopping for luxury items than they were for authentic local goods (43%) like cosmetics and skincare (38%), crafts (37%) and natural specialty products (31%).
When it comes to the things they want to see down under, once-in-a-lifetime ‘must see’ attractions and landmarks like the Sydney Opera House and Great Barrier Reef hold the most allure.
The most popular cities are Sydney (73%), Melbourne (61%), and the Gold Coast (33%).
But Australia still can work on its welcome for Chinese visitors.
“While Australia is overwhelmingly known for our friendly culture and hospitality, we have been slower to implement Chinese-friendly initiatives in comparison to global markets,” Hotels.com Australia and NZ marketing manager David Spasovic said.
“The CITM report shows the Australian accommodation industry must keep up in order to stay connected to the Chinese audience, especially with Tourism Australia predicting Chinese travellers will make up close to half of Australia’s inbound tourism market by 2020.”