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12 NEWS Asian Market

12 NEWS Asian Market Facing New Challenges PATA CEO Mario Hardy gives his “low down” on the current scenario What are the key tourism trends in Asia? We put the question to Mario Hardy, CEO of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA)… Tourism numbers in Asia have increased steadily for the past decade and many destinations have struggled to keep pace with infrastructure development in popular tourist areas. Some are trying to catch up, but can’t keep up with the pace of the growth numbers. One solution is to encourage the dispersal of tourists to secondary destinations, a solution that is being encouraged in Thailand, Indonesia, Cambodia and other countries. Indeed, Japan has reemerged somewhat. Please tell us more. Japan has had a tremendous success in the past 2 years as Chinese, Thai, Koreans and others nationalities have started to visit the country in greater numbers. What are the main trends concerning China – outbound? In 2015, there were 116 million outbound Chinese travellers, a number that is continuously increasing. According to “COTRI”, there are 280 million Chinese that have the financial means to travel overseas. This means that there are still another 164 million that could potentially travel. The devaluation of the yuan and the financial crisis currently hitting China is causing concerns in the industry. The reality is that outbound travel in China will continue to grow, although possibly at a slower pace in 2016. Is Myanmar having “growing pains” when it comes to tourism? Myanmar tourism infrastructure development is being outpaced by its fast growth in tourism arrivals. The country still has enormous potential and it is believed that in the next decade it could be amongst the leading destinations in Asia. There is still much need for tourism investments across the country if it is sustain the growth rate. What kinds of tourism are blossoming? The adventure market is the fastest growing sector across Asia. According to the “UNWTO”, it is believed that the sector is worth in excess of 3 billion. Young Asian travellers no longer wish to be spectators, but actors when they travel, according to a soon to be released study by PATA titled “Stepping Out of the Crowd”. They wish to experience travel, be part of it and engaged with local communities. Which DMOs appear to have the most assertive promotional campaigns in Asia? I must say that personally I’ve found the “It’s more fun in the Philippines” campaign to be memorable and engaging. You hear the first few words and can easily finish the sentence. You hear the song and know that it is about the Philippines. However in terms of effectiveness and results, I must say that Thailand has done extremely well in the past year with its “Thainess” campaign and the promotion of the 12 hidden gems of Thailand. How is PATA working to help promote the region and what will your activities be at ITB Berlin? PATA is a bridge between the public and private sector and our aim is to bring both parties at the same table to tackle challenges in the industry and jointly develop new opportunities. We do this by publishing insightful research, by creating innovative events and organising training programs that help develop the necessary skill sets to develop our industry sustainably. PATA CEO and the association’s regional directors for Asia, China and EMEA will attend ITB Berlin and meet with many industry stakeholders gathering their thoughts on the challenges faced by the industry. PATA and Messe Berlin will jointly be hosting a lunch on March 10, 2016 from 1200-1400 hrs at the Cube Club at CityCube Berlin. Mario Hardy CEO, Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) THE ADVENTURE MARKET IS THE FASTEST GROWING SECTOR ACROSS ASIA. ITB BERLIN NEWS • Thursday 10 th March 2016

TRADE TALK 13 Meet Tuniu Chinese travel giant debuts at ITB Berlin Founded in 2006, Tuniu was not only established to expand package tour options for Chinese travellers, but to also collaborate with global travel providers looking to access China’s exploding outbound tourism market. While building a formidable catalogue of package and self-guided tours, Tuniu also consults overseas travel resource suppliers on how to understand and fulfill the needs and wants of Chinese tourists, and how to conduct effective cooperation with China’s domestic travel agencies. Benefitting from the continuing boom in China’s online leisure travel market - projected to grow almost 40% between 2014 and 2016 – the Nasdaq listed travel titan has come to ITB Berlin for the first time to build new international partnerships. Alex Yan, Co-Founder, President and Chief Operating Officer of Tuniu, tells us more about the Chinese travel brand. Tuniu is a leading online leisure travel company in China. We offer a variety of products such as packaged tours, including organised and self-guided tours, as well as travel-related services such as air ticketing, hotel booking, online financial services, visa processing and tourist attraction ticketing for travelers. We have over 1,450,000 products connecting travellers from our 240 departure cities to 150 destination countries. Do you expect market growth to continue in 2016? China’s leisure travel market continues to grow rapidly. This is primarily driven by the growing consumption power of Chinese consumers, and the evolution of leisure consumption patterns. For the year 2015, Tuniu generated RMB7.6 billion (Euro 1.06 billion) in net revenues and RMB10.6 billion (Euro 1,48 billion) in gross bookings. According to analyst projections, China’s online leisure market in 2016 will reach RMB 60.69 billion (Euro 8.45 billion), up more than 35% year-on-year from 2015. What are your main goals at ITB Berlin? As Tuniu continues to expand its offerings across over 150 destinations countries, we continue to cooperate more and more with international partners in order to develop our business. ITB Berlin, ITB BERLIN IS FILLED WITH NEW TRAVEL INNOVATIONS AND CONCEPTS FROM ACROSS THE WORLD which is well known across the global travel industry, is a great platform for us to be exposed to new partners. By attending ITB Berlin we hope to let more travel companies know about our brand, and to establish new connections with potential partners. What will be the key trends in terms of Chinese traveller destinations? Growth has been strong across all regions as the increase in demand for outbound trips continues to increase. We are, however, seeing an especially strong surge in demand for destinations that are within a six-hour flight radius from China. Which European countries most appeal to your customers? Europe is a large part of our business. Travelers to Europe generally go through a number of European countries during their trip in order to get the full experience of the region. What should western receptive TOs and hotel operators do to better welcome Chinese clients? Language support and shopping discounts are some of the most helpful aspects when trying to better attract Chinese tourists. How important will ITB Berlin be as a platform for finding new ideas and inspiration? ITB Berlin is filled with new travel innovations and concepts from across the world. We are excited to be a part of the conference and to be able to explore how other companies are reinventing the concept of travel. Whether it’s mobile technology or new ways to take travelers on tours, it is important for us to always be ahead of the game in the constantly evolving travel industry. Alex Yan Co-Founder, President and Chief Operating Officer, Tuniu ITB CHINA FOR 2017 Messe Berlin, organisers of ITB Berlin and ITB Asia, will add a third string to their bow in 2017 with ITB China. Announcing the move at the official opening press conference on Tuesday, Messe Berlin CEO, Dr Christian Göke said his organisation had agreed partnerships with several major players in the travel industry in China (eds: such as Tuniu), and that the success of the event would depend on this strength of association. ITB BERLIN NEWS • Thursday 10 th March 2016

ITB Berlin News