China’s outbound medical tours rise four folds in 2016
A Ctrip medical tourism report shows that the number of Chinese travelers going on overseas medical tours in 2016 increased four folds against the year before.
The number of Chinese travelers traveling for medical services such as physical examination in 2016 increased 400% against the year before, according to Ctrip’s annual online medical travel report.
The report shows that an estimated 500,000-plus Chinese tourists had traveled abroad for medical services in 2016. Their average spending at more than RMB 50,000 (USD 7,195) was 10 times the average per capita expenditure of China’s outbound travelers.
Ctrip.com’s online browsing and reservation data of 2016 show that the top 10 theme tours for Chinese travelers were respectively nature expedition, road trips, skiing holidays, medical tours, honeymoon travel, golf tours, wellness tourism, yachting, trekking and diving.
Among them medical tourism ranked high in terms of average spending, next only to polar expeditions.
It is becoming increasingly popular among China’s mid- to high-end consumers to travel to Korea for cosmetic surgery, or take their parents to Japan for physical examination, or head to Europe for on an oxygen-therapy or to the U.S. for genetic testing.
Ctrip data show the 10 most popular destinations for China’s outbound medical tours in 2016 were Japan, South Korea, the U.S., Taiwan, Germany, Singapore, Malaysia, Switzerland, Thailand and India.
Japan and South Korea have become Chinese tourists’ preferred destinations for medical tours as the two Asian countries are nearest to China.
In South Korea, Chinese visitors tend to go for plastic surgery. In Japan, well known for its world-leading cancer prevention and diagnosis system, Chinese visitors do not hesitate to stump up RMB 20,000-30,000 (USD 2,878-4,317) for a physical examination.
Some developing countries are also becoming popular medical tour destinations for Chinese travelers. India, being one of the world’s largest pharmaceutical manufacturing base with good-quality and inexpensive medicines and high-level medical services, was enticing more and more Chinese travelers too. (Translated by Jerry)