Chinese are tourism’s biggest spenders

China overtook Germany and the United States as the largest spender in international tourism in 2012, according to UNWTO, with an expenditure of US$ 102 billion. The market is only getting bigger, in fact The Tourism Administration of China predicts that more than 100 million Chinese tourists will travel abroad in 2014.

Experts from the hospitality industry discuss increased travel within and out of China:

UNWTO says that the increase has been due to, “rapid urbanization, rising disposable incomes and relaxation of restrictions on foreign travel.” has been following Chinese travel trends since 2012. The Chinese International Travel Monitor 2014 shows that 97% of Chinese travellers have been abroad for leisure and 49% have been for business and education. It says that Chinese international travellers were the top spenders for hotel accommodation in Australia, Japan, Netherlands, and New Zealand in 2013.

This monitor surveyed Chinese travellers about booking and travel behaviour. The research found that on average Chinese travellers looked at almost five sources of information when researching holidays, which is up from four in the 2013 monitor. 53% said they book accommodation online or through a mobile app. 59% of those surveyed said Free Wi-Fi was the most important service they look for on a trip abroad, and 71% of hoteliers said that Free Wi-Fi was the service most requested by guests from China. This desire for connectivity reflects global trends.

Countries across the globe, including Mexico, New Zealand, Russia, Spain, Taiwan, UK, and the US are targeting this growing source market with tourism campaigns and initiatives. However, according to, Australia is the place Chinese travellers would most like to visit. The USA was the top destination actually visited in 2013, and Hong Kong and Thailand follow in second and third place.

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Video clips produced by for the Hospitality Channel, including interview from industry conferences such as the IHIF conference as well as specific Hospitality Channel shoots.

Wellness – A surging $3.4 trillion market

The Global Wellness Institute’s 2014 report has revealed that Wellness is a US$3.4 trillion industry. The Global Spa & Wellness Economy Monitor shows that there has been rapid growth of the industry in recent years, which the report attributes to population aging, economic prosperity in emerging economies, and the stresses and strains of modern living. The spa industry alone has grown more than 50% from US$60 billion in 2007 to US$94 billion in 2013.

The Institute’s study covers spas, wellness tourism and thermal/mineral springs. It suggest that wellness tourists, which it defines as tourists seeking activities to, “maintain or enhance their personal wellbeing,” spend 59% more than the average tourist.

Asia now has the largest number of spas globally, the report states, whilst Europe still receives the highest revenues from the industry at US$29.8 billion. Africa and Latin America have also seen rapid growth of spas. Asia is the leading region for the more traditional thermal and mineral springs, with a revenue of US$26.7 billion, most of which is produced by resorts in Japan and China.

In 2013 the spa industry had 1.9 million employees and the wellness industry had 14.5 million employees, according to the report.

The study predicts that growth in these industries will continue. It states: “As more and more consumers take preventative measures to maintain good-body health, prevent diseases, and to age well as they live longer, the demand for wellness industry products and services will only increase.”

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