China’s online travel industry grew 38.9% in 2014
The scale of transactions in China’s online travel industry reached RMB307.79 billion in 2014, up 38.9% from the previous year.
The scale of transactions in China’s online travel industry reached RMB307.79 billion (approx: US$48.5 billion) in 2014, up 38.9% from the previous year, according to the 2015 China Tourism Development Report released by the China Tourism Academy.
A Weibo or Wechat account for the monastery?
The report also gives a positive growth outlook overall for the industry with sustained high growth rate for the next few years.
The report indicates that the air ticket transactions segment was still the largest online by a wide margin, and online hotel transactions showed rapid growth.
Airlines were actively working with OTAs to build direct sales platforms online while traditional hotels are jumping on the online bandwagon to upgrade their guest experience and thus market shares.
5A-rated attractions and traditional tour operators were increasingly using new media for marketing.(Translation by David)
Up to 96.91% of 5A-rated attractions opened official Weibo accounts and 90.22% have opened Wechat accounts. These were used along with other new media channels to conduct a variety of marketing campaigns.
About 55 5A-rated attractions had also set up flagship stores on Alibaba’s Taobao online marketplace platform.
Among China’s top 100 tour operators, 68 had Wechat marketing platforms, 63 employed third-party platforms and 50 had Weibo platforms.
The report has however identified four main issues that the online travel industry has to tackle:
- The market concentration is too high with little room for growth for startups.
- The industry lacks product differentiation and the competition is intense.
- Industry regulations need to be tightened and information security is a concern.
- Profitability for individual companies is uncertain leading to concerns for sustained growth in the industry.(Translation by David)