The Visa Global Travel Intentions Survey revealed that Japan has been voted a top destination among business and leisure travellers in the region, especially Hong Kong.
Conducted by The Nielsen Company in February and March 2011, the survey had a sample size of 11,620 respondents from 23 countries around the world.
“While Japan has always been a firm favourite among travellers from Hong Kong and Greater China as has been noted in both this year’s and our previous surveys. We re-ran the survey in Mainland China in August this year to assess how much the March tsunami affected traveller sentiments,” said Ross Jackson, head of cross-border business, Asia Pacific, Central Europe, Middle East and Africa of Visa.
“The survey, very encouragingly, found that Mainland Chinese respondents still rank Japan among their top destinations. This is in line with Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) Destination Trends that international arrivals to Japan have picked up slightly post-tsunami,” he added.
A sample size of 504 Hong Kong travellers with an average age of 36 years old and a median monthly income of US$1,568 were surveyed online.
Fifty per cent of the respondents in Hong Kong ranked Japan as their first-choice travel destination, followed by Taiwan and Mainland China.
Some other key findings offered insights into the Hong Kong traveller’s travelling styles, plans, accommodation preferences and visitor levels and expenditure in the country.
Flexible travelling styles ranked in highest, with 37 per cent stating their preference for booking their trips directly with airlines and hotels, and 30 per cent indicating an inclination for individual tours versus 28 per cent who expressed preference for packaged group tours.
Over the next two years, Hong Kong’s frequent travellers are planning for an average of six business and leisure trips, compared to four and seven planned by their counterparts in Taiwan and Mainland China respectively.
The average spending in the last international trip by Hong Kong respondents was revealed to be HK$9,242 (US$1,188). This figure is expected to rise to HK$10,121 (US$1,301) during travels in the coming two years.
As for accommodation, majority of the respondents (64 per cent) stated that they were most keen to stay at three- to four-star hotels.
Also, visitor levels to Hong Kong have reflected steady growth. According to the Hong Kong Tourism Board, over 1.2 million visitors from the United States visited Hong Kong in 2010, a 9.5 increase year on year.
Supplementary statistics also show that American visitors had the highest satisfaction level of inbound visitor arrivals to Hong Kong.
Additionally, in 2010, spending on shopping in Hong Kong surged 33.5 per cent year on year to HK$109.6 billion, while international visitors spent US$151 million at dining establishments in Hong Kong.
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