Preview: ‘Decoding the Luxury Traveller Mindset: Spotlight China’

ILTM AsiaPac study looks at what luxury travel means to HNW Chinese individuals

A preview of the latest ILTM ‘Buzz or Reality’ research, entitled ‘Decoding the Luxury Traveller Mindset: Spotlight China’ is to be revealed at ILTM Asia Pacific 2023, held 19 – 22 June in Singapore.

In this new China-focused report, ILTM has again partnered with Altiant, to bring a unique and comprehensive

representation of what luxury travel now means to affluent and High Net Worth Chinese individuals.

Altiant is a fieldwork entity specialised in quantitative market research and operating exclusively in luxury and wealth management industries. Below, Meryam Schneider, SVP at Altiant sets the scene:

  1. ILTM’s new report looks at a hot topic: the travel behaviours of wealthy Chinese travellers. There have been many other studies on Chinese travel intentions, so what makes this latest study stand out from the rest?

The granularity and actionable insights: Although the topics of revenge travel and resuming international travel has been portrayed publicly, this report has much more granularity and dives right into the push and pull factors. Quantifying the findings creates genuine, actionable insights for professionals in the luxury travel industry.

For instance, we learn that there is a strong appetite for living their bucket list and that there is clear push and pull factors such as Health and safety that remains the most influential factor in holiday bookings, but also the retail/food and drink offering (49%) and sustainability credentials (46%). The report also contains a lot of verbatim illustrating the data points. We also have been running this survey for the second year in a row, so we have been able to highlight some critical evolutions in the luxury traveller’s mindset.

Meryam Schneider, SVP at Altiant 

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The source: The survey has been exclusively submitted to validated affluent and HNWIs to bring relevant content and help luxury industry professionals understand their target more precisely.

More than two-thirds of the interviewees (69%) were the equivalent of USD millionaires ($1m in investible assets), while almost half (49%) had a household income of $300,000 or more.

Image credit: Shanghai EDITION

2. What are some of the most fascinating finds from the Decoding the Luxury Travellers Mindset: Spotlight China study?

We noticed a surprising turn since the previous wave. In 2021, 48% of wealthy Chinese preferred spending on luxury goods rather than luxury experiences vs only 37% in 2023. Also, 73% told us they are willing to spend more and travel in style on more extravagant and unique trips.

3. Are there earlier industry projections on Chinese travel intentions that have now shown to be mere speculations?

We have heard a lot about privacy/seclusion becoming the guiding choice for the years to come, or that regional tourism will take over international trips. The study has demonstrated that just 39% now prefer this, and international trips are already back on the agenda, with 60% of the interviewees planning to go abroad.

Image credit: Grand Kempinski Hotel Shanghai

4. Based on your research, what new business avenues/opportunities are there for travel and tourism organisations and destinations looking to grow their share of HNW Chinese travellers?

Family and multi-generational trips are growing, with almost half of the wealthy Chinese planning for one in the next 12 months. Mental wellness-related travel is a priority for 41%, increasing by 5 percentage points. It is important to give the right attention to these trends in the imminent future.

Last but not least, the opportunity for travel agents to gain more market shares to offer more complex trips to this hard-to-reach population.

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