MKTE 2018 Market Presentation Platform: China

Event Africa Contributor 02/10/2018 Industry Events
mkte 2018

A new feature has been introduced for MKTE 2018, Market Presentation Platforms. These educational sessions will give exhibitors an opportunity to learn more about the needs of particular source markets and help exhibitors tailor their offering.

These insights will be followed by introductions to all the Hosted Buyer representatives from the featured markets. This area is located in the Lenana foyer, next to the Tour Operators section of the show.

The second featured market occurring on Day One between 14:00 and 15:oo is China.

China is currently Kenya’s fifth biggest tourism source market internationally and the second biggest source market in Asia. It contributed 5.5% of total international tourist arrivals to Kenya in 2017. The number of tourist arrivals from China to Kenya in 2017 grew by 11.8% to 53,485.

China is also one of Kenya’s best performing tourism source markets, having shown a 42.9% growth since 2011.

A destination must have an Approved Destination Status to attract Chinese tourists.

Kenya is among 150 countries that are fully approved for group travel from China.

The positive performance of the Chinese market has been enhanced by increased air access into Nairobi provided by national carrier, Kenya Airways and one of China’s leading airlines; China Southern Airlines. Nairobi enjoys easy connectivity to China as there are a number of other airlines that provide flights to Nairobi from China.

Kenya is seen as an adventure destination and is more popular among the younger travellers from China. Kenya’s natural landscapes are deemed to be extremely competitive on the international standards and are highly appreciated by Chinese travellers.

The Chinese market represents a huge opportunity for Kenya’s tourism industry. This is especially considering that Chinese tourists travelled overseas on 131 million occasions in 2017, an increase of 7.0% from the previous year. The UNWTO has projected that the number of Chinese travelling overseas will reach 200 million by 2030.

At the same time, China is presently not only internationally recognized for its propensity to engage in travel but have also established themselves as the world’s largest tourism spenders. In its 2017 Tourism Highlights Report, the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) ranked China as the world’s top spender on tourism with a total expenditure of US$ 261 billion (equivalent to KSh. 26.4 trillion).

In 2017, outbound Chinese tourists averaged USD 5,565 per person, with estimates for 2018 average spending expected to reach USD 5,715 – a growth of 3% year-on-year. Chinese tourists spent an average of USD 762 per person on shopping. According to research findings published by the Fung Business Intelligence Centre (FBIC), it is predicted that total spend by outbound Chinese tourist shoppers will reach over USD 420 billion by 2020, further signifying the importance of China as a tourism source market.

Expenses by outbound Chinese tourists are shopping (25%), hotel accommodations (19%), and dining (16%). Other categories of expenses include visits to tourist attractions, local transportation, recreation, and communications and others

Chinese adventure travellers are keen to experience pristine natural environments to escape from the pollution plaguing many mainland cities.

Chinese travellers love awe-inspiring iconic nature, wildlife and authenticity and unique photography opportunities – all of which Kenya has an abundance of.

As a result, a majority of the Chinese consumers travel to Kenya during the wildebeest migration period from July to October. This leads to low visitation during the other months which affects tour operator/hotel sales.

To minimise the seasonality of travel to Kenya by Chinese travelers, Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) has rolled out several consumer campaigns in the market promoting Kenya as an all-year-round destination.

Chinese travellers are very sensitive to issues relating to their culture.  They generally prefer destinations that have adopted some Chinese cultural practices in their tourism facilities, i.e. signage and/or food menus in Chinese.

KTB is working with Kenya’s tourism stakeholders to sensitise the Chinese travel market on the importance of adaptation of some of their products and services to suit the Chinese consumer. KTB is also deepening its engagement with Chinese trade and media to increase interest and desire for travel to Kenya among Chinese consumers.

See what other markets will be featured, here.