Chinese outbound travel boom

Major new report released on Chinese tourism in Europe

A big data report on Chinese tourists traveling to Europe in the rst half of 2019 reveals a 7.4% rise over 2018.

The China Outbound Tourism Research Institute and Ctrip jointly released the “Big Data Report on Chinese Tourists to Europe in the First Half of 2019.”

The report analyses the big data of millions of vacation products on Ctrip’s travel platform, combined with that of more than 7,000 Ctrip stores in major cities, along with European travel data from the Huacheng International Travel Group, China’s leading outbound travel operator.

According to data released by the China Outbound Tourism Research Institute, the number of Chinese visitors to Europe in 2018 exceeded 6 million. With favourable policies on visas, flights, exchange rates and consumer services to Europe, China’s travel to Europe will, says the survey, continue to grow in 2019. In the rst half of this year, the number of outbound tourists from China was expected to be about 81.29 million, up 14% from the previous year, with 3 million trips to Europe, up 7.4%, according to COTRI.


According to Huacheng, the number of people booking a trip to Europe in the rst half of 2019 grew by 12.3% year-on-year. Ctrip travel data shows that Europe is the second most popular destination for Chinese tourists, accounting for 10%, second only to Asia.

In the rst half of 2019, according to Ctrip travel data, the top 10 “dark horse” destinations were Croatia, Latvia, Slovenia, Bulgaria, Estonia, Albania, Serbia, Malta, Ireland and Denmark, with the number of Chinese visitors to Croatia up 540% year-on-year in the first half. Andorra, Monaco and the Transcaucasian countries, Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan, located in the heart of Eurasia, are also becoming popular destinations for Chinese tourists, according to booking data.

The top ten popular source cities are Shanghai, Beijing, Chengdu, Chongqing, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Kunming, Xi’an, Nanjing and Wuhan, the top ten black horse starting cities are Guiyang, Shenyang, Qingdao, Hefei, Taiyuan, Nanning, Hangzhou, Changchun, Dalian and Nanchang; among them, the number of Guiyang tourists visiting Europe in the rst half of this year increased by 526% year- on-year.

In the first half of the year, a number of new routes to Europe were opened, with direct flights from Shanghai to Budapest, Shenzhen to Dublin and Rome, Beijing to Oslo, Shenzhen and Hangzhou to Rome, Guangzhou- Urumqi-Vienna and other routes to be opened, making it easier for Chinese tourists to travel to Europe.
In the first half of 2019, according to the analysis of the gender and age of tourists, the proportion of women visiting Europe was 62.9% and the proportion of men was 37.1%. The total number of visitors in their 50s and 60s exceeded 50%, with 12.7% over 70 years of age. The “new group tour” quality tourism era is coming, with the number of customised tours to Europe increasing by 315% year-on-year. The growth in the number of private groups doubled, with the average number of participants being 3.2 people. The number of people signing up for private group tours in Europe has been increasing year by year. Data shows that the number of visitors to Europe who signed up for private group products increased by 120% year-on-year, and the number of private group visitors to Europe accounted for 5% of the total number of visitors to Europe. In the first half of this year, the top 10 cities from which travellers were registering for private trips to Europe were Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou, Chongqing, Nanjing, Wuhan, Hangzhou, Zhengzhou, Xiamen and Suzhou, while the top 10 popular destinations were the United Kingdom, Russia, Italy, France, Switzerland, Spain, Greece, Iceland, Germany and the Czech Republic.

Photo: Chinese tourist queue in front of a Hermes store in Paris