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Chinese travel behaviours uncovered

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We explore recent Booking.com research to reveal the habits and behaviours of Chinese travellers

Despite outbound limitations, Chinese travellers’ desire to travel persists. This year, the domestic tourism industry in China is expected to recover to 70% of the pre-pandemic level, according to the China Tourism Academy. 

For China-based partners looking to take advantage of this domestic demand when it’s possible and safe to do so, understanding the new priorities and preferences of Chinese travellers is key – especially around significant dates such as Chinese New Year (1 Feb 2022) and the 2022 Winter Olympics (4 February - 20 February 2022). We delved into the results of a recent Booking.com survey* to reveal the needs and wants of Chinese travellers in 2022. 

Trip motivations

When asked about the main things they’d like to achieve from their next trip, 33% of Chinese travellers said they want to enjoy new experiences while 23% want to try new foods. After spending so much time at home, 38% of respondents will prioritise a change of scenery. 

When it comes to trip types, 81% of respondents agree that they are more open to different types of vacations than before the pandemic. Additionally, 83% don’t mind where they go on vacation, as long as it matches the trip type they want, be it a ski vacation or a beach getaway. 

Accommodation preferences

In recent years, consumer values shifted towards self care and wellbeing. It’s unsurprising then that 72% of Chinese travellers agree that they are more inclined to stay in accommodation with wellness facilities – gym, swimming pool, spa, etc – now than before the pandemic. Additionally, 73% of respondents expect properties to offer wellness classes such as yoga, pilates and meditation. 

With 74% of respondents interested in booking accommodation with dedicated co-working space available, remote working is set to remain an important trend in 2022. A key consideration here is reliable internet, and 83% of travellers agree they would like to work remotely but would need reassurance that the accommodation’s wifi is strong. Going hand-in-hand with this trend is length of stay; over half (59%) of Chinese travellers would prefer to spend longer (more than 14 days) at a destination if they could build in some time for work.

Travel companions 

When it comes to who Chinese travellers are looking forward to travelling with this year, family takes the number one spot, with a staggering 96% of respondents indicating they would be likely to travel with family on their next vacation. 

Pet ownership has increased since the beginning of the pandemic, and when asked, 72% of Chinese travellers said they were likely to bring their pet along on their next vacation. Partners can market to this trend by indicating their pet preference in the Policies section of the extranet. 

Technology innovation

The pandemic has accelerated demand for innovation, with technology helping to make travel safer and more efficient. According to our research, some of the tech innovations Chinese travellers would be most interested in taking advantage of during their travels include facial recognition software for contactless check ins (76%), a virtual reality tour of accommodation prior to travel (73%) and even a robot concierge service (64%). 

 

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Takeaway
  • *Research commissioned by Booking.com and conducted among a sample of adults who plan to travel for business or leisure in the next 12-24 months
  • In total, 1,000 respondents from China were polled
  • Respondents completed an online survey in August 2021