China outbound: slowest growth since 1997

But travel to Europe and America grows by 22%
Outbound traffic from China increased by only 2.4% in the first quarter of this year, reaching 30.2 million – the lowest growth rate reported since the beginning of outbound tourism from China in 1997, and the first single-digit growth rate in the current decade.
However, this is primarily being dampened by the drastic 11% decrease in Chinese visits to China’s Special Administrative Regions (SARs), according to the China Outbound Tourism Research Institute.
Outbound travel to other parts of the world, especially Europe and North America, grew by 22%.
Hong Kong saw a 15% fall in Chinese visitors from 12.3 million to 10.4 million and Chinese arrivals to Macau slipped 2% from 5 million to 4.9 million.
About two-thirds of the missing arrivals in Hong Kong were not leisure visitors but day trippers, a likely result of the restrictions on “ant traders” who used to cross daily from Shenzhen into Hong Kong. Chinese nationals living in Shenzhen and working in Hong Kong also face the same restrictions.
The number of overnight Chinese visitors in Macau actually increased by about 100,000 in the first quarter, while day tripper arrivals fell by 200,000. The declines saw the share of overall departures to Hong Kong and Macau fall from 59% to 51%.
TTG Asia

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