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Andalucía delegation shares a stand with Turespaña at the ITB China tourism fair, held in Shanghai. SUR
Chinese tourists visiting Andalucía increase by 200 per cent

Chinese tourists visiting Andalucía increase by 200 per cent

The regional government participated in the ITB China tourism fair last week and held two presentations to promote the destination in Shanghai and Beijing

Pilar Martínez

Tuesday, 4 June 2024, 11:05

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Chinese tourism looks to Andalucía when planning trips to Spain. Figures show the travel market's fast pace of recovery, considered a priority for the region after the standstill caused by the closed borders since the pandemic until last year. 2023 was the year that the air routes with the main Chinese cities were re-established, as well as the flow of travellers.

The first four months of 2024 offer data that position Andalucía with a growth rate of 200% in visits by Chinese tourists over this period. These figures are provided by the regional ministry for tourism, culture and sport, which is participating with an exhibitor at China's main tourism fair, ITB China. This event, held in Shanghai, confirms the importance of the market for Andalucía, which from January to April received 75,256 travellers in its hotel establishments, representing 248% more than in the same period last year. Moreover, overnight stays by these visitors amounted to 101,103 over these four months, 192% more than in the same time period in 2023. These figures show the dynamism of this country. Suffice to say, over the whole of 2023, hotels in Andalucía received 136,049 travellers from China who made 191,806 overnight stays.

Travellers with high purchasing power

"This is a market with great potential which showed a growing number of visitors in Andalucía prior to the pandemic, who have high purchasing power and do not organise their trips in high season, contributing to year-round tourism," the regional government said, who participated in ITB China by delivering two presentations to promote the destination in Shanghai and Beijing. Around one hundred agents and professionals from the travel market, including representatives of companies such as CTrip, travel agencies, operators and airlines attended the event.

The regional government further highlights the importance of this fair, which brought together a thousand specialised buyers and more than 600 exhibitors from 80 countries. At this event, which ran from May 27 to 29, the Andalusian delegation shared a stand with the Spanish tourist board Turespaña, where it liaised with China's intermediaries and met with companies in the aim of promoting the region.

"This action is part of the ministry for tourism's strategy to attract travellers from long-haul markets, with China being one of the issuers to which most attention is paid, as was done with the launch of the 'Andalusian Crush' campaign last year, that reached more than 595 million people in the country," a representative from Turespaña said.

In total, the event, which took place in a pavilion of more than a hundred square metres, featured twelve co-exhibitors, including tourism entities from Andalucía, Castilla La Mancha, Galicia, Aragón, Madrid and Valencia, in addition to four key companies in the market.

Forecast

According to Turespaña, "China is a strategic asset for Spain with good prospects and a high-impact client, with an average expenditure per traveller of 2,900 euros, one of the highest added value among international markets." The company also points out that the latest data on air capacities for spring 2024 from this market to Spain have seen an increase of 38% compared to 2019, thereby surpassing other European destinations. Turespaña adds that Chinese airlines have expressed their satisfaction with the results and are planning to increase the frequency of flights and possibly introduce new routes, which they hope will lead to the market's full recovery this year.

The company lastly highlights the importance of the Chinese tourist, whose profile, they say, is particularly interesting as they are motivated by city and cultural tourism, and therefore different from the classic holidaymaker. They are also more likely to travel independently: in 2023, only 15% of Chinese tourists who arrived in Spain did so by hiring a package tour, according to data from the National Institute of Statistics.

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