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Chinese tourists shop ‘til they drop in Italy


For the summer of 2018, the Chinese have chosen Europe, Italy in particular, as a favorite travel destination.

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For the summer of 2018, the Chinese have chosen Europe, Italy in particular, as a favorite travel destination. Italy recorded an average growth in spending of 87% compared to 2017, the year in which the Chinese flow planned to visit Italy.

Globally, the average user expenditure grew by 43% from 2,955 renminbi (rmb), i.e., about 375 euro, compared to 2,073 rmb, about 260 euro, last year. Italy is fourth in the world for levels of spending by Chinese consumers, after France, South Korea, and Denmark, with an average amount of 7363 rmb (930 euros) calculated in the period July 1 to August 31, 2018, according to data from Alipay, a mobile payment platform managed by Ant Financial Services Group.

In addition, the total number of transactions by Chinese consumers in Italy has grown by 188% since 2017 allowing it to gain in the world ranking of countries. Europe has a prominent position with a presence of over 50%.

“Traveling abroad, especially in Europe, is one of the greatest desires of the Chinese tourist, especially the new generations,” commented Pietro Candela, head of Alipay for the Italian market. “The majority of Chinese tourists declare that shopping, with Alipay in particular, in Italy is an unrepeatable opportunity to buy, taking advantage of an excellent exchange rate and to enrich one’s own travel experience.

“For merchants and brands, it is an opportunity to easily welcome the Chinese, giving them the opportunity to find their favorite store and products and to pay at home via mobile, starting a relationship even after returning to China.”

Chinese tourists who contributed most to the high levels of spending are those born in the 1990s (19-28 years of age). This summer, the platform managed about 2 1/2 times more transactions abroad in stores than last summer.

Asia continues to dominate the top 10 in terms of summer transactions abroad (in the first position Hong Kong is followed by Thailand and South Korea). The number of Alipay transactions in Russia has increased by over 5000% because Chinese travelers flocked to attend the World Cup. Countries in Northern Europe (such as Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Luxembourg, and Switzerland) recorded a growth in volumes in double-digit transactions.

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About the author

Mario Masciullo - eTN Italy

Mario is a veteran in the travel industry.
His experience extends worldwide since 1960 when at the age of 21 he started exploring Japan, Hong Kong, and Thailand.
Mario has seen the World Tourism develop up to date and witnessed the
destruction of the root/testimony of the past of a good number of countries in favor of modernity/progress.
During the last 20 years Mario's travel experience has concentrated in South East Asia and of late included the Indian Sub Continent.

Part of Mario's work experience includes multi activities in the Civil Aviation
field concluded after organizing the kik off of for Malaysia Singapore Airlines in Italy as an Institutor and continued for 16 years in the role of Sales /Marketing Manager Italy for Singapore Airlines after the split of the two governments in October 1972.

Mario's official Journalist license is by the "National Order of Journalists Rome, Italy in 1977.