Weekly Round-Up (10 October)

Welcome to this week’s China Ready Now Round-Up. As I mentioned previously, last week was China’s National Day “Golden Week” holiday. Perhaps your tourism business saw an increase in Chinese visitors?

Certainly at a national level, Australia will have seen an increase in Chinese visitors, expected to be up by 20% on last year’s numbers. If that is the case, that means over 90,000 Chinese will visit Australia this month, the bulk of them during last week’s holiday. To put that in perspective, that’s more than double the amount of Chinese visitors during October just three years ago! But if you think that is impressive, just wait for January/February.

We can expect to see over 300,000 Chinese making the trip down here during the first two months of 2017, which coincides with Chinese New Year – the peak period for Chinese to travel.

when chinese visit

What does this mean? It means that your tourism marketing campaigns must start now. Chinese tourists start researching and booking their holidays 3 – 4 months in advance, so you need to hurry if you want to get noticed. But how can you get noticed?

The most obvious (and easiest) way is by improving your online reputation. With Chinese increasingly researching and booking their holidays online, a low ranking on China’s major travel websites such as Ctrip and Qunar means your business may never even get seen by Chinese. For instance, say you’re a hotel owner. There are over 500 hotels listed on Ctrip for Sydney alone, with 25 listed on each page. If your hotel is not in the first couple of pages, practically no Chinese will ever see your listing. The same is true for tour operators, destinations, attractions and restaurants.

Do you know what your online ranking is, and how you can improve it? I could tell you very quickly – just get in touch for a free consultation. But hurry, your potential Chinese customers are about to start their research! Enjoy this week’s Round-Up.

Australian focus:

  • Tourism ministers converge on Hobart to work on strategies to lure Chinese: Federal Tourism Minister Steve Ciobo has identified continuing investment in tourism infrastructure, preparation for 2017’s Australia China Year of Tourism, and regional tourism investment as key priorities.
  • Qantas publishes Chinese language magazineQantas hopes to engage the world’s largest tourism market by launching a Chinese language magazine. The bi-annual magazine, to be published in China’s peak travel seasons of October and January, will focus on beauty, shopping, local food and wine.
  • Chinese property’s ‘golden week’ not so golden this year: Wealthy Chinese once again travelled to Australia for holidays and a spot of property shopping during last week’s “Golden Week”. However, agents report that transaction numbers were down as Chinese buyers struggle to get cash out of China.
  • Chinese tourism boom shows no signs of slowing: Australia now tops China’s rankings of aspirational destinations, and of places people intend to visit. The chief drawcards, according to Tourism Australia’s research, are food and wine, natural beauty, and blue skies.

International focus:

  • Ctrip sees 3500% rise in visa applications to Morocco: The online booking site says demand for Morocco has skyrocketed for the Golden Week vacation period. The United Kingdom, Cambodia, Russia and New Zealand are also popular destinations, with 60% year-on-year increases expected.
  • Alipay Wants to Make Overseas Airports Better for Chinese Travelers: Chinese tourists can now use Alipay at 10 key overseas airports. Alibaba’s Alipay is facing increased competition from Tencent’s WeChat Pay, as both companies look abroad to service their Chinese customers’ travel needs.
  • Airports Around The World Keen On Getting More Connections To China: The most important sentence in this article by Professor Wolfgang Arlt: “Destinations which manage to convince a carrier to establish a direct connection are bound to see an increase in arrivals from China. However, if such new routes are not accompanied by product adaptation, careful guarding of one’s brand image and the right kind of policies, such growth is not necessarily sustainable.”

That’s all for this week’s Round-Up. For more updates during the week on Chinese tourism trends, follow us on Twitter or Facebook.

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