Chinese travelers have the biggest impact on international tourism at the moment. In 2015, as many as 120 million of Chinese travelers went abroad. That’s more than any other country in the world. In total, these tourists spent US$194 billion in 2015, which is US$30 billion more than a year ago.
In order to find out what destinations Chinese travelers are interested in, Resonance Consultancy (New York) published a report based on 1.2 million reviews on Qyer.com, a popular travel review website in China. As expected, Asia remains the most popular destination, followed by Europe, Southeast Asia and North America.
Hong Kong remains one of most popular places to visit for Chinese travelers. In 2014, Hong Kong welcomed 47 million visitors from mainland China. That is six times more than the population of Hong Kong. Mainland Chinese like Hong Kong for absence of sales tax and multiple stores with authentic goods. However, in long-term prospect, Hong Kong may lose its popularity as there is slowdown in Chinese tourist numbers. Meanwhile, tourism to Australia, Japan and Thailand is blooming. During September 2014 September 2015, Chinese tourists spent US$5.2 billion in Australia. The influx of Chinese tourists to Japan doubled in 2015 from 2.4 million visitors in 2014 to 5 million.
When it comes to Europe, France is the most sought after destination for Chinese. It is also easier for Chinese travelers to enter the country as in 2014 France shortened the visa application process from 12 to 2 days. In 2015, France offered special 48-h ready visas for up to 5 years. According to Forbes, other European countries also welcomed more Chinese travelers in 2015. Spain and Norway attracted 60% more visitors during first three quarters of 2015, Croatia managed to attract 56% more visitors, while Austria and Finland welcomes 49% and 44% more visitors respectively.