Some 40% of customized travel are for outbound travel plans, among which Europe accounts for 10%, according to an industry report jointly released by online tour operator Ctrip.com and China Outbound Tourism Research Institute on Monday.
With a year-on-year growth of 130%, Europe is seeing increasing Chinese travelers opting for such unique, personalized and thematic travel experiences. Apart from being unique, main demands for trips are those that are in-depth, slow pace, private, niche and more about leisure.
Since the launch in January 2016, Ctrip Customized Travel has seen increased user demand up to 120,000 per month.
From Ctrip’s travel data, 2017 saw more than 6 million Chinese making their first entry to Europe. 9.3% of Chinese travelers chose Europe as their outbound destination, making it the second most popular continent for Chinese travelers. Females travel more than males and 23% of total outbound tourists to Europe are aged 50 and over.
The top 5 European countries for customized travel are UK, Italy, France, Russia and Greece. On average, customized trips to Europe last around 12 days with tours not exceeding two countries.
The average expenditure for customized tours to Europe is at least RMB 2500 per person, per day.
Once Europe entered its prime travel season in June, there was a clear month-on-month growth rate from May to June, while the number of European customized tours peaked in July. Demand in countries such as the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Spain, Greece, and Italy rose significantly. The Spring Festival holiday period ushers in another wave of European customized tours in January.
Shanghai, Beijing and Guangzhou are the top three departure cities for customized travel. While they comprise of 50% of customized travel, second-tier cities such as Harbin, Wuhan, Fuzhou, Nanjing and Hangzhou are part of the fastest-growing cities with year-on-year growth exceeding 100%.
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