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+ 50% more Chinese tourists in Africa (and how to take advantage?)

Africa is a new final destination with growing appeal for experienced Chinese travelers seeking in-depth, luxury, personalized and independent travel. In this article, we will show you how to ” how to attract Chinese tourists in Africa?

Chinese OTA Ctrip reported a 70% year-on-year increase in purchases of Africa-related tour products in the first seven months of 2018. According to the China Tourism Academy (CTA), Africa welcomed 797,800 Chinese tourists in 2017. Some countries, like Morocco and Tunisia, have seen huge increases in recent years thanks to new visa policies, and interest in Africa is growing among Chinese travelers looking for new destinations to explore. In November 2018, a ‘Luxury Chinese Traveler 2018 Report’ revealed that Africa was the destination with the biggest increase in interest from high net worth Chinese travelers, breaking into the top three most popular world regions for travel as it increased from 15% in 2017 to 29% in 2018.

Following the success of Morocco and Tunisia in attracting Chinese visitors after they went visa-free in 2016 and 2017, respectively, Zimbabwe, Rwanda, Angola, and Benin all started offering visas-upon-arrival to Chinese nationals in 2018.

Who is traveling?

According to the African Travel & Tourism Association (ATTA), the rise of High net worth travel is the biggest trend in Chinese tourism to Africa right now Ctrip data shows that in the first half of 2018, 54% of Chinese travelers visiting Africa were female, in line with the general ratio of female to male Chinese outbound tourists around the world. 64% of Chinese travelers to Africa were born in the 1970s, ’80s, and ’90s, with older “silver travelers” (born in the 1950s and ’60s) accounting for 29%. Chinese tourists to Africa tend to come from the first-tier cities of Shanghai, Beijing, and Guangzhou.

Chinese who visit Africa are likely to be very experienced travelers who have already been to Asia and likely Europe and North America as well, and see Africa like Latin America as a final destination. It’s also an appealing destination for affluent Chinese who treat travel as a social currency and who are eager to explore parts of the world that their friends and acquaintances have not yet been to.

How do they travel?

According to Ctrip, 59% of Chinese travelers to Africa in the first half of 2018 joined package tours, and the other 41% (+12% YoY) chose to travel as FITs or used Ctrip’s customized travel service. 29% of Chinese travelers were couples, and 28% visited Africa with family (children or parents). Most Chinese travelers (96%) stayed in Africa for a period of more than seven days.

The majority of Chinese travelers to Africa spend on average $1464-2196 (RMB 10,000-15,000) per capita. While 41 percent of travelers fall into that category, 28 percent spend up to $2928 (RMB 20,000) on their trips, according to the CYTS report.

Tips for attracting Chinese tourists in Africa

With the rise of customized tours, making strong connections to the Chinese travel trade is essential for African destinations. Apart from traditional methods like road shows and trade shows, it’s time to better think about the digital marketing strategy for connecting to Chinese travelers.

Travel Influencers+ KOLs: GMA Case-Jacada Travel

Jacada Travel is an African and South American tourist agency offering a luxury tourist service for people who want to have a unique adventure experience and enjoy their trip. Due to the economic boom in China, they now bet a lot on Chinese tourists to increase their reputation worldwide.

To promote their service in China, Gentlemen Marketing Agency has helped them build their official account of social media at Weibo and has helped them generate followers on social networks.

In China, KOL or Influencers have a very special place in the Chinese People’s Heart. Every time that Kol write about a new destination or trip, it will become a hotspot for Chinese day tours. Especially for destinations that are relatively unknown in China, influencer marketing can have a significant effect, and working with Chinese travel bloggers and other KOLs is strongly advised.

Another African country looking to increase its Chinese tourism arrivals, Rwanda opened a pavilion on Chinese OTA Fliggy at the end of 2018, and also received an endorsement from Alibaba (Fliggy’s parent company) founder Jack Ma.

Better understand your Reputation

Knowing how to most effectively attract Chinese travelers depends on understanding general market trends, as well as what’s specifically appealing about your destination to Chinese travelers including things like safari, hot air ballooning, wine tasting, cultural activities or archeological attractions. In addition to some of the ideas outlined in our blog series on Chinese tourism to Africa, you can also learn a lot from reading content on Chinese travel review sites and checking other online resources to help you better understand your reputation.

Baidu Seo Marketing: GMA Case- Safari 365

Based in Africa, Safari 365 offers to its customers from all over the world the ability to access local knowledge and savings directly from a true destination specialist when planning a luxury safari to Africa.

Safari 365 contacted GMA for helping to create a strong Baidu marketing in order to rank on the top Baidu pages

The Chinese market offers great business opportunities due to its rapid economic growth and a huge market. However, it has its fair share of challenges, ranging from inadequate market information, inappropriate entry strategy, lack of access to sales channels, difficulty in finding the right partners and cultural differences, etc.

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8 Comments

  1. Dear,
    I am a managing director of Trust Africa Tours and Safaris Company LTD, operating in Tanzania East Africa. Our company has been working with local community as well as guest from different countries. our activities are working with tourism guests who want to climb mounts available in Tanzania such as Kilimanjaro, Meru to mention few, vist beautful National parks around the country. our price are reasonable and fair. I am writing to you to see how we can partner so that you can bring tourism guest from China to do tourism in Tanzania through my company.

    Thank you in advance for your good reply.

    Best regards,

    Gerald Gabriel.

  2. I am a private travel agent from Tanzania.I would like to combine with a Chinese travel agency and get clients who likes to travel to Tanzania
    We provide vehicles and drivers for lowest price.and we have excellent tour guides.
    I like to combine with a Chinese travel agent. Thank you

  3. We are South African professional hunters and outfitters. We offer a unique family holiday in South Africa where we combine outdoor activities, from fishing and camping to luxury lodges, game drives and hunting safaris.

    We have skilled guides and hunters who ensure our overseas clients enjoy a true African experience, with more than 30 wildlife species for hunting.

    From Airport transfers to helping the little ones clean their fish, we can be contacted for tailor made family holidays or strictly hunting safaris.

    We are eager to partner with Chinese travel agencies and introduce our beautiful country to them. Thanks!

  4. Hello,
    We are searching serious partner in Africa for high level safari,
    please send your capacity, communication in Chinese,
    and show your Chinese website and WeChat official account.
    We will not reply to non serious people sorry.

    1. Hello!

      Thanks for your mail. and I’m serious partner in Africa for high level safaris. So that we can work together.
      Regard:
      Gathi Frederick

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