Hotelbeds Group, the leadingbedbank worldwide and business-to-business provider of services to the travel industry, last week confirmed its increased commitment to the Chinese travel market during its MarketHub Asia event held in Bangkok, Thailand.
China is Hotelbeds Group´s fastest growing source market country and has now become the fifth biggest source market globally for the Group, up from 22ndplace only five years ago. Additionally it is also the number one source market for the Group in the Asia Pacific region, having overtaken India two years ago.
In addition China is also a fast growing destination of choice for users of Hotelbed Group´s two Bedbankplatforms: Hotelbeds, which focuses on the online travel agency (OTA) and tour operator sectors, and Bedsonline, which works exclusively with travel agents. As a response to this increased demand the Group´s Bedbank division is looking to significantly increase the amount of hotels it has in China and is currently increasing contraction.
Currently there are around 200 employees across China working for Hotelbeds Group across its various brands, including both Hotelbeds and Bedsonline, but also its destination management brands such as Pacific World and Destination Services. This figure is expected to grow in line with Hotelbeds Group´s growth plans for the country.
Speaking with clients at the MarketHub Asia event in Bangkok, Global Sales Director at Hotelbeds Group Sam Turnercommented:
“China is our fastest growing source market and a top priority for growth over the next few years.
“There are whole range of factors you need to take into account such as visa issues, expectations of different roomfeatures, and now we are seeing a generalshift away from group bookings towards individual trips. Even the payment solutions need to be localized, with many now expecting to use social media platforms such as WeChat for payment.
“But it is no longer just outbound international bookings, we are seeing increasing demand internationally for China as a destination and therefore we are looking to significantly increase our hotel offering in the country over the next 12 months.”
The MarketHub Asia event was attended by around 300 senior travel professionals – with around 100 delegates from China – from tour operator and OTA clients of Hotelbeds from across AsiaPacific.
The theme of the event wasPowered by data, driven by people. Focusing on how travel companies can use data to drive growth in their businesses, it included insights into how the landscape of travel data will evolve over the coming years.