China's outbound tourism market saw healthy growth in 2018 as mainland travelers registered 149.72 million outbound visits last year, up 14.7 percent from the previous year, according to the Ministry of Culture and Tourism.
On the homefront, the domestic tourism market recorded 5.5 billion visits last year, up 10.8 percent year-on-year, the ministry said.
Meanwhile, the Chinese mainland received 141 million inbound visits, increasing by 1.2 percent year-on-year, with Myanmar, Vietnam and South Korea as the top three sources of visitors.
In total, the country's tourism industry grossed a revenue of 5.97 trillion yuan ($880 billion) last year, and preliminary estimates showed the sector contributed 11.04 percent to China's GDP in 2018, according to the ministry.
According to the China Tourism Academy, Chinese travelers spent some $120 billion in 2018 on tour packages, tickets, hotel reservations and shopping, with no comparative figure provided.
Ctrip said that Hong Kong occupies the top slot on mainland travelers' wish lists for outbound travel and shopping on its platform.
It's estimated that by the end of 2020, the number of middle class families in China will reach over 200 million, and they are expected to spend 19 percent of their yearly salary on outbound travel, the China Tourism Academy cited the World Bank as saying.
The academy said that China's tourism market is expected to enjoy healthy prospects in 2019. Outbound visits are forecast to climb 11 percent this year to over 166 million, while inbound tourism will see about 143 million visits, up about 1 percent.
Read Original Article