Statistic shows that in 2020 there will be over a 100 million Chinese traveling abroad. Nowadays we can already see that the Chinese are more and more traveling as there were 70 millions international trip in 2011 taken by the Chinese population. But what does that mean for the hospitality sector? What are the changes hoteliers must make to satisfy this new and massive demand?
The reasons for these changes are the booming economy in China; Nowadays China is the second largest economy, and his allows the middle-class to have a bigger purchasing power and so there are more able to afford trips abroad. The second reason is that other government see the opportunities to make money in the Chinese tourists and make easier for them to get a visa. Korea, Japan and Spain government already loosen up the obtaining of visas for the Chinese.
But it’s also the entire country that is opening to the world and want to know more about new cultures.
Because the profile of tourist from China nowadays is changing: they are more independent travellers, even if group tours are still very trendy, more and more Chinese will travel alone. They are more confident and so they are travelling now far away from their country. They favourite destination are still countries near China, like Hong Kong, Singapore and Tokyo, but they also love to come to London and Paris. The typical Chinese tourist is interested in luxury and shopping. Tourists from China are the biggest spender in the accommodation sector when ravelling abroad (In 2010 they spend 54 billions dollars). This is the reason why the hospitality sector must adapt its facilities to this new market.
A lot of hotels saw the opportunity and are already making some changes to satisfy this new customer with different needs. Tourist from China want to be able to see local attraction and they want to have hotel shops in their hotel. They need to feel at home and for that they need to have newspapers in Chinese and to have also the TV in their native language. They also need to be able to speak with employees that know their languages, so hotel are pushing their staff to take mandarin lessons. Other hotels are offering tea and noodles supply in rooms and also have typical breakfast and meal from China for their guest. Chinese people are unique in their customs and they need to find hotels that understand their demand and satisfy them.
For the future, business must improve their services, but more important they need to improve their marketing and ameliorate their brand awareness in the Asian countries. They also need to adapt their website to Chinese culture as there are 420 millions Internet users in China. The website of a company is the most important tool in marketing, as this is the first contact guest have with the business and so it need to fit the expectations of Chinese. To be able to do that, Hotels and other business in the tourism sector need to be flexible and change the brand’s position in order to connect better with the Chinese culture.
To conclude, Chinese travellers are changing the dynamic in the hospitality sector. The hospitality sector must make changes to fit to the expectation of this new market if it wants to stay competitive.
SVANSTORM J. (2012) The Chinese international travel monitor 2012. Hotel.com. Retrieve November 5, 2012 from http://press.hotels.com/en-gb/files/2012/07/Hotels.com-Chinese-International-Traveller-MapCITM.pdf
SELINGSON H. (2011) Marketing to the new Chinese consumer. Forbes Insights. Retrieve November 8, 2012 from http://images.forbes.com/forbesinsights/StudyPDFs/Marketing_to_the_Chinese_Consumer.pdf
BRANIGAN T. (2012, August 17). Chinese to become biggest spenders as record numbers head overseas. The Guadian. Retrieved November 8, 2012 from http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/aug/17/chinese-foreign-travel-surges
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