The Rooster sees rise in visits!
This Saturday 28 January marks Chinese New Year, and millions across the globe are set to revel in the festivities and welcome in the new year of the Rooster. According to Chinese tradition, the Rooster is the epitome of fidelity and punctuality. For ancestors who had no alarm clocks, the crowing was significant, as it could awaken people to get up and start to work; and that's exactly what is predicted to happen to the UK inbound tourism sector.
As festivities get underway across the weekend, thousands of Chinese tourists will be celebrating in the UK with the most recent data showing that bookings from China to the UK were up 81% for January 2017 compared to the same month last year, and up 43% for January to March this year. Outside of China, Britain will be host to some of the world's largest Chinese New Year celebrations including dragon parades in Manchester, lion dances in Birmingham as well as festivals and events in London’s China Town, Glasgow, Newcastle, Cumbria and the Isle of Wight to name a few.
According to VisitBritain, China is the world’s most valuable outbound tourism market. With strong interests in luxury shopping and high-end department stores, the average Chinese visitor spends £2,174 during their visit to the UK, more than three and a half times the average tourist.
Thanks to a post-Brexit boom, 2016 showed strong growth for inbound tourism and another record breaking year is forecasted for 2017. The number of overall inbound visits to the UK is expected to rise to 38.1 million, up 4% on 2016 which is likely to see about 36.7 million visits by year end. VisitBritain has ambitions to double spend from Chinese visitors to £1 billion by 2020. In 2015 China moved into Britain’s top 10 most valuable inbound markets for the first time with Chinese visitors spending £586 million.