Outbound Tourism

China is a land of promises and surprises when it comes to travelling. There is an old Chinese proverb that highlights the importance of travelling. According to it, travelling 1000 Li equals reading 10,000 books. It implies that the eastern country’s culture supports travelling.

Outbound tourism in China rose to prominence after July 1997. It has grown to become the world’s largest source market and had registered over 20% growth at times maintaining its growing spree to double digits.

Chinese citizens are exploring and discovering traditional destinations that represent different cultures of the Chinese diaspora among various destinations in Asia and Asia-pacific. Now, Chinese outbound tourism shows a promising picture.

The economists and business analysts assert this belief based on the following factors: –

  • China’s population
  • Escalating income of Chinese citizens
  • The ratio of passport holders against the total population is low
  • Holistic development of a network of hospitality services, both in the private and public sectors, in the Chinese mainland
  • Increased promotion and marketing of travelling destinations
  • Expeditious visa facilitation of travellers
  • Refund policies and tax rebates for travellers

Travellers are looking to experience the local culture and immerse in this experience. Their expectations with the travel industry have increased with a rich outbound travel experience. It has become easier with the application of technology, online payments and smart applications such as prior bookings.


Guidelines for success in the Chinese Outbound Tourism Market is published with a joint effort of UNWTO and the Chinese Tourism Academy to understand the tourism industry in the mainland by analysing the micro and macro data facilitated by the Academy and the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of China.

These guidelines present travelling plans according to the budget of the traveller. The Chinese travelling market is considered one of the largest source markets in the world since 2012. 2018 recorded 150 million outbound trips from China which were 15% more than yesteryear.

Chinese travellers spent $277 billion on their travel abroad. It was also 5% more than what Chinese tourists spent on travelling in 2017. This kind of tourism is generated by the wealthy dwellers of east and south-east Chinese territories such as: –

  • 5 high-end residencies in Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei
  • Shanghai’s Yangtze River delta central
  • Pearl River Delta centred on Guangzhou and parts of Shenzen
  • High-end establishments of the Chengdu-Chongqing
  • Urbanised and uber-rich people of the Yangtze river

Chinese outbound tourism reflects some of the basic features which are given as follows: –

  • Chinese outbound tourism is divided among social stratification and classes
  • High quality of travel is valued and appreciated
  • Many big revenue-generating brands are showing their likeliness to enter into the tourism industry and offer development and revamping of the industry for smoothening the process.

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