Chinese tourists visiting

Go west, young man

Outbound tourism is superior to even the most positive expectations of a decade ago, when Chinese travelers are sent to the far reaching with a wandering heart and stuffed wallets in their pockets.

"To be wise, one must read ten thousand books and travel ten thousand miles." Li Bai (Tang Dynasty poet)

"After hearing so much about European beauty with TV and magazines, we have saved over three years to pay for our holiday in June this year. When we arrived in Paris, we were expecting something really big, but the rooms in the hotel were small, the food was low quality, the people we met, seemed a bit cold, and in some areas of the city, we did not feel safe. " Liu Feng from Shanghai, who first went to Europe in 2005.

Such a reaction is not uncommon in Europe by Chinese tourists are accustomed to in their home country to a high standard of living in hotels at low prices, clean and modern transport systems and a very low crime rate.

A few years ago, the number of Chinese tourists traveling abroad, was so small that their views and experiences were not too considered the industry in Europe.

Now, however, these numbers are beginning to look impressive and early ruhalniki travel industry in Europe lead the efforts to clarify what can be done to improve the experience of Mr. Liu and others like him.

China is now the fastest growing market of the European travel industry, and with the right approach, hotels, guest houses, shops and attractions across Europe are able to get great profit from this newly opened market.


Last year, about 31 million Chinese traveled abroad. Basically, they visited other Asian destinations such as Hong Kong, Macao, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia and South Korea, but two million Chinese people also traveled to Europe, and this figure should increase from year to year. By 2020, Europe could expect 13 million Chinese visitors annually.

Traveling especially fashionable in the so-called "Golden Week" in China – February, May and October. Now in China, the working week is officially limited to five days and the minimum annual leave – 14 days, which gives a longer holiday.

In 2005, the publishing permits Lonely Planet announced that it is to start giving some of his books in the Chinese language in response to the increase in the number of Chinese travelers. Three areas, which must be issued by the Chinese version of Journey – is the UK, Germany and Australia.

However, it is not all conventional swimming. European car Piarists struggling with some annoying stereotypes when it comes to the Chinese view of Europe and its people. "Foggy London, Paris expensive, messy Rome and Madrid is dangerous" – and this opinion is not only those who have not yet visited, but also those who, like announced in a number of consumer focus groups we conducted recently.

travel agents

The overall picture of the Chinese travel industry – is a robust growth due to an increase in income levels, easing restrictions on travel and the long period of rest. Only a certain number of licensed travel agencies shall be entitled to the services of international vyeznyh tourist services, and in 1997, China had only 67-site travel agencies; by 2004 the number had risen to 528. Recent years have seen the privatization and restructuring of the former state-owned agencies.

However, the market remains fragmented agencies, and national players is not enough. It still dominates government bodies, many with outdated attitude toward service. The Chinese government encourages the private and foreign capital flows into the sector, but many tours that offer the existing agencies, non-intellectual in content and style, and the reality is that the industry has a long way to go before it actually services the needs of its customers.

At the moment, 90 percent of Chinese who travel abroad do so on group tours and travel agencies usually receive a commission in the amount of about 5-20 percent of the retail price of the tour.

Independent travel is usually not popular, and one of the key explanations for this with a & # 39 is the language. In the Chinese education system, emphasis on reading and writing of foreign languages ​​leaves even those who have a good estimation of the English language with poor communication skills. For the majority of the Chinese population of speech in another language is simply not possible. Given that travel literature and travel and airport signs in Europe has not yet been produced in the Chinese language, the country is even more closed for the ordinary tourist.

Passports and paperwork

Traditionally, Chinese citizens prohibited to travel and do not have passports, which could make it. Over the past three years, this situation has changed dramatically.

After long negotiations, China signed the "Assigned destination" (ADS) with more than a hundred partners, including some European countries. ADS simplifies the departure procedure for Chinese tourists, allowing them to travel on ordinary passports and apply for a tourist visa.

Without advertising the Chinese residents can only travel on visas for business, study or visit relatives. With the ADS, in some Chinese passports that have financial resources, there are no restrictions on foreign travel, provided that they can get a separate visa required for entry into the country in which they are traveling. The only restriction is that the journey within the official tour group and support should be present all the time, when the group is abroad.

For European countries, ADS means that countries may legitimately promote group travel on holiday across the distribution channels and sales to wholesalers and travel agents, as well as to promote the destination and its products to Chinese consumers. *


In 1983 the Chinese mainland for the first time allowed to visit HK and Macao in the private sector

2003 Chinese citizens are allowed to apply for private passports, using the residence, offering the possibility of international travel to the masses

2004 Germany became the first EU country to adopt Chinese tourists


· After obtaining a passport, Chinese citizens can apply for a visa to travel anywhere

· For countries with ADS, they can apply for a tourist visa, and for countries not included in the ADS, they have to get a business visa or specifically for visiting friends and relatives. (In the case of the Schengen countries visa allows one to access all the countries belonging to the Schengen Agreement)

· Although after the visa free travel in the country of destination if the journey to the tourist groups, it is common practice guide to carry passports of all members of the group.

· Travel agents in China who "lose" the members of their respective groups, while in Europe, quickly fall into the black list of operations for the issuance of visas at embassies and consulates in China. The number of permanently or temporarily blacklisted ODC tour operators has been steadily increasing.


Shopping – another way to get the European business from increasing wealth in China and recently granted freedom to travel. Although the number of tourists can be low, the level of spending by Chinese tourists, who really get into Europe, have.

Travel to Europe often for Chinese traveling abroad, and their scheme costs can be irrational. Some simply buy what they can not buy in China. Chinese tourists costs often do not reflect the level of income, therefore, looking at household income and even the disposable income of the Chinese population can be misleading. Many spend much more than we expected.

According to French tourism authorities, the average French Visitors from China spend US $ 3,000 per visit. On the contrary, the average expenditure of visitors from North America and Europe account for only US $ 1,000.


China clearly has great potential, but for many operators in Europe is a complicated market.

One of the ghosts of the European tourism industry with a & # 39 is that it is tightly regulated, as consumers with & # 39 are Europeans; but if customers buy their products outside the EU, there are several rules.

One factor that helps to reduce the price, with the & # 39 is a creative competition of Chinese operators based in Europe. These agents are willing to use informal networks of business contacts that bypass many normal group tourism requirements. Approved by the tour operator is difficult to compete on price with China Town agency that supplies the mini-bus, operated by a local waiter and while Chinese tourists do not demand more, this situation can not change. The good news from the & # 39 is that we think that in the near future, Chinese tourists will require a lot more.

Other problems:

-Sharty booking period

-Pastayannaya change programs

– Unfair competition from smaller agents who pay money

– From a lack of understanding of Chinese agents monitor the long route in respect of hours of driving (it is hoped that the new EU legislation on the management of the car will give all operators equal conditions for the implementation of intelligent routing.)

– Insufficient knowledge of Europe among Chinese sellers

-Raznyya habits and tastes of Chinese tourists (behavior in hotels and restaurants is different from what is expected in Europe)

– Lack of knowledge of European law by the Chinese tour operators.