CKGSB Knowledge - China Business and Economy

Spreading Their Wings

Yin He cannot stand tour groups. The 29-year-old Beijinger has traveled to 20 different countries in the past few years, but she insists on doing so under her own steam.

“I don’t want to get up early every morning and follow a bunch of people around places in a rush,” she says. “I prefer to decide things in the moment and enjoy the freedom I don’t have when working. Plus, my English is good enough to communicate and solve problems by myself when I’m traveling.”

Chinese millennials like Yin promise to reshape the global tourism industry. Unlike their parents’ generation, who preferred to travel abroad on Chinese-organized tour groups, today’s young Chinese are independent, individualistic and willing to try more adventurous vacations.

This shift is opening up huge new opportunities for travel and tourism operators worldwide. They can now advertise directly to China’s 400 million children of the 1980s and 1990s, who often book their next trip online and on impulse.

For operators able to target this group, the rewards can be spectacular. Chinese millennials already make more overseas trips than all American tourists combined. They also spend more: tourists

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