Tourism for Chinese Travelers, Essay Example
It is beneficial to cater to the needs and preferences of Chinese travellers in order to promote economic well-being in target country. Tourism is a large industry and there is a large population of individuals from China who are financially able to travel to countries around the world and who will spend their wealth on tourist sites as a form of entertainment. According to travel statistics, “outbound tourists rose from 16.6 million in 2002 to 70.3 million in 2011 and are expected to rise” even more significantly in the future (Shankman & Ali, 2013). Furthermore, Chinese tourists spent 30% more on their 2012 trips than they did in 2011, indicating the positive effect that their growing economy has had on the lifestyles they are able to enjoy. As a result, it is reasonable to consider that Chinese travellers will become more prevalent and more able to spend money as their economy continues to develop. Therefore, it is important for tourism managers to determine how the needs and preferences of Chinese travellers can be met in a manner that improves their marketing practices.
To wreak the economic advantage that Chinese travellers are beginning to offer, countries around the world are preparing for their arrival to make their tourist destinations more attractive to members of this population. Currently, France is the most popular travel spot for Chinese citizens due to a variety of luxury dining and shopping options. Another potential reason for this is their tied history to the Communist party. In addition, the country is a member of a Schengen visa scheme that allows Chinese citizens to travel to a group of approximately 25 countries on their visa. Since France has made tourism easier for Chinese travellers, it has become a popular tourist destination. Countries that wish to increase the influx of Chinese travellers to their nation should therefore look towards France and other successful countries as examples to determine how to best market their tourist sites to the ever growing influx of Chinese tourists. Most countries are interested in increasing the level of Chinese tourism, so competition will also be a factor as a part of this process.
Why should tourism managers and marketers study the needs and preferences of Chinese travellers?
It is important for tourism managers and marketers to study the needs and preferences of Chinese travellers due to the financial incentives it offers. Since the economy of China is developing rapidly, there is a large earning potential that could be earned from working with these individuals. However, attracting the Chinese market is complex and requires a depth of research and understanding to be successful. Due to the political nature of the county, mainland Chinese citizens were not permitted to travel outside of their territory until 1983, when they could be granted special permission to travel to Hong Kong and other nearby cities (Tawil & Al Tamimi, 2013). The current rapid growth of Chinese tourists is therefore due to not only the economic growth enjoyed by the nation, but also changing laws that no longer restrict the ability for citizens to travel (Lew, 1987). According to the World Tourism Organization, China will provide the largest outbound travel market in the world by 2020 (World Tourism Organization, 2003). Thus, tourism managers and marketers must begin building practice now in order to accommodate the influx of these individuals into their countries.
It is important for tourism managers to determine if the tourist destinations they are responsible for meet the travel motivations of Chinese travellers. According to the literature, there are three factors that play a role in this process: personal motivations, destination attributes, and situational inhibitors (Crompton, 1992). In a study that analysed the motivation of Chinese visitors to visit Jordan, tourism professionals determined that these tourists were most interested in visiting the country because they wished to travel to a place they have not yet visited, they wish to see new things they have not yet seen, and they want to experience cultures different from their own. Furthermore, they wished to be in an environment with good weather, historic sites and interesting places, and a place that was safe and secure. Last, they wished to visit a place that was popular so others would be excited about their visit for them and they also wished to have a vacation that could be considered relaxing (Tawil & Al Tamimi, 2013). It is important to consider that these are the factors that brought Chinese tourists to Jordan, but this understanding could also be used to appeal to the wants and needs of Chinese citizens for the purposes of marketing tourism in other countries.
Additional studies that have been conducted to identify the needs and preferences of Chinese tourists have found that casino destination trips are widely popular among a portion of the population. In this study, it was found that 402 individuals, approximately 20% of those surveyed, indicated that they would prefer a vacation in which they are able to gamble (King Wan, 2012). Of these individuals, 32.5% reported that they had a high level of education, and an equal amount was found to make at least $1000 a month. Furthermore, a majority of these individuals were found to have come from mainland China. These statistics are important because they provide a representative sample of Chinese citizens that enjoy adult gaming. Not all participants would necessarily be able to afford a trip to the United States or to a region with a similarly established economy, which is evident based on the sample of their monthly income. However, individuals that could afford adult gaming would be likely to spend a large amount of money on such a vacation destination. This information also indicates that it is important to have affordable options for Chinese tourists. For example, not every individual would be able to afford a typical New York vacation due to the high prices of the hotels and tourist destinations. Instead, it may be reasonable for tourism managers to create travel packages that appeal to certain demographics of the Chinese tourist population to promote travel to a certain location.
How could tourism providers better serve this market?
Of the various needs and preferences that must be met for Chinese travellers to pick a tourist destination, the most reasonable factors that influence their travel decision include the cost of the trip, the interest level of tourist destinations, and the desire to see new tourist destinations. As such, these needs could be applied to increase the tourism of Chinese residents to New York. While many Chinese tourists have already visited New York City, they have not had the opportunity to explore the other parts of the state. These tourist destinations are less crowded, more affordable, and to a large extent, safer. It would therefore be beneficial for tourism managers and marketers to focus on vacations to additional regions in New York to attract more Chinese tourists to the state as a whole. Furthermore, tourism to New York City is currently being promoted within China. NYC & Company is currently promoting less-travelled New York destinations, such as governor’s island, within Chinese travel brochures (Santana, 2015). As a consequence, Chinese tourism to the state is expected to grow by 15%. This demonstrates that meeting the needs and preferences of Chinese travellers will encourage tourism to a targeted destination.
In addition to marketing more directly to Chinese tourists in their own country, many museums in New York are creating art exhibits to specifically target the cultural interests of the group (Levere, 2015). Specifically, museum tours now have a Mandarin language option and accept a variety of Chinese credit cards. Many of these museums also run promotional advertisements in China to attract a crowd. Furthermore, the Met recently implemented a Lunar New Year exhibit and the Costume Institute is creating a gallery that focuses on China as well. Statistics have shown that Chinese tourists who visit New York are likely to spend $7000 per visit per person, contributing to a high incentive for making adjustments that will influence these individuals to return to the state once again. This specific targeting is important to ensure that Chinese tourists will have tourist destinations that are interesting to them upon arrival. Since many individuals have already travelled to New York for the more well-known tourist destinations such as the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building, it is important for tourism managers and marketers to focus on attracting Chinese tourists to destinations that they have not yet visited.
By providing culturally specific exhibits and recreating current tourist destinations in the Mandarin language, tourism managers and marketers are better able to appeal to the needs of Chinese tourists. To promote tourism within the United States, the government recently made it easier for Chinese tourists to obtain a visa. However, tourism professionals must now make the travel experience easier for Chinese tourists who may easily become confused in a foreign land if they do not speak English. Therefore, there is a need to hire a larger percentage of Mandarin speaking individuals that work at prevalent tourist destinations to help these tourists accomplish their goals at individual tourist sites and to help them get to their next location. This is especially useful for tour guide companies to implement so Chinese tourists feel more comfortable signing up for their tours and purchasing large packages.
It is apparent that many modifications are currently being made to cater to the Chinese tourist population, but it is necessary to determine whether the efforts being made are being done in a manner that allows New York to remain competitive with other potential travel destinations. Since the state is geographically far from China, it may be necessary for tourism managers in this location to apply more effort to attracting and maintaining Chinese tourists than is necessary in other popular regions for travel. To ensure that Chinese tourists continue to want to give their business to the New York tourism industry, it is necessary for popular tourist destinations to continue to cater to the specific cultural and language needs of Chinese tourists and for tourism managers to continue to popularize new destinations in the state by issuing advertisements in China.
While tourism to New York is high, the associated costs with travel are high as well. As a consequence, studies have shown that tourists from China enjoy travelling to the city but must spend their evenings in New Jersey in order to ensure affordability (Barron, 2014). Therefore, if New York wishes to capitalize on the market that travels to its city, it needs to provide affordable housing options for its Chinese visitors. There are many affordable temporary housing options in the city, although these alternatives are not made readily known to a majority of tourists. One popular option is to find an apartment on Airbnb, which allows city residents to sublet their apartments for several nights (Airbnb, n.d.). This option will be expensive in some areas, but less expensive in others. Therefore, this platform will allow Chinese tourists to select affordable housing options and live the real New York City experience simultaneously. Tourism managers would benefit by making this housing option better known.
In addition, individuals that wish to visit downtown Manhattan would benefit from residing in Staten Island, New York during their stay. This island is a part of New York City that is considered to be primarily residential and affordable. Most hotels on the island are larger than hotels in Manhattan and therefore provide a more comfortable experience. In addition, these hotels provide free shuttle service to the ferry, which is a free tourist destination, to take these individuals to Manhattan. Last, Chinese tourists that visit other parts of the state will find that their experience is highly affordable and full of interesting sites. Travel destinations outside of the city include Niagara Falls, Lake George, Albany, Lake Placid, and more. There are many scenic and historic travel destination available outside of the city’s limits that will provide visitors with a once in a lifetime opportunity.
There are many aspects of the Chinese tourist’s situation that make different tourist destinations more or less appealing to them. The factors that Chinese tourists prioritize when making a travel decision are often the cost of the trip, the interest level of tourist destinations, and the desire to see new tourist destinations. To attract Chinese tourists to New York, it is therefore necessary to advertise cost-effective travel options. Staying in Manhattan is very expensive for a large portion of tourists, but staying in the other boroughs of the city or visiting destinations outside of the city altogether are reasonable travel options. New York is a high interest area for Chinese tourists due to the historical relevance of the city in addition to the many shopping and dining opportunities available. There are also many tourist destinations including the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building. Many tourists may not wish to visit New York more than once due to the belief that they have already seen all of the sites they need to. Therefore, it is the responsibility of the tourism manager to demonstrate that this is untrue and to promote additional sites and destinations for their return trip.
Chinese tourism in New York is evolving in part due to the cultural considerations that tourism managers are making. Because many tours are now available in Mandarin and demonstrate an appreciation for the Chinese culture, Chinese tourists are more likely to visit these sites. This is an important understanding because the Chinese culture is diverse from the average New York resident. On the other hand, the city can take advantage of its diversity by being appealing to Chinese tourists. Tourism managers can accurately form a balance between these two characteristics of the city to make tourism sites more attractive to this category of tourists.
Overall, New York tourism would benefit from a greater incorporation of Chinese culture into tourist sites in order to influence a greater number of visitors. Making Chinese tourists feel welcome and providing them with new sites to see will continue attracting tourists both to popular and to new destinations in the state. Tourism to new destinations will increase once they have been tried and reported as a positive experience. Therefore, Chinese tourism will grow with the expansion of promoted tourist destination and positive memories of the experiences that they provide. Promoting fun and entertainment while making the vacation less stressful for Chinese visitors is the key to success. New York must differentiate itself from other popular tourist cities to maintain an economic advantage over its competitor destinations. The effort that New York is currently putting forth to increase its role in the Chinese tourism industry is currently paying off, but continued improvement will ensure that it is able to lock in its place as a permanent competitor for the growing influx of Chinese tourists.
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