Chinese tourists are spending less on shopping, survey finds


A group of Chinese tourists stand with shopping bags at the Canal City Hakata commercial complex in Fukuoka, Japan, on Friday, July 24, 2015. Four million Chinese tourists are expected to head to Japan this year.

Kiyoshi Ota | Bloomberg | Getty Images

A group of Chinese tourists stand with shopping bags at the Canal City Hakata commercial complex in Fukuoka, Japan, on Friday, July 24, 2015. Four million Chinese tourists are expected to head to Japan this year.

Chinese tourists are starting to spend more on experiences rather than on things.

As luxury brands and retailers globally gear up for millions of tourists during China’s upcoming Lunar New Year holiday, a survey released Thursday indicated that consumers in the world’s second-largest economy are no longer as eager to simply shop. Rather, they are more interested in sightseeing, entertainment and food.

The amount that Chinese tourists spent on shopping fell to less than a third of the overall trip budget, or 32 percent, in 2018, consultancy Oliver Wyman found in its latest study of outbound Chinese travel. That’s compared to 41 percent of the total trip budget in 2016, the report showed.

The average amount spent on shopping also declined to 5,800 yuan ($855) last year, from 8,000 yuan in 2016, the report said, citing a recent survey of 2,000 Chinese traveling overseas.

For the first time in the survey’s brief history, less than half of the respondents named shopping as one of their top three reasons for going abroad.