ME expects1mn Chinese in 2024

ITB China, a three-day networking event organised recently in Dubai with TRAVTALK as the media partner, witnessed 600 exhibitors from over 80 countries and 1,000 buyers, apart form 15,000 visitors. More than 27,500 business meetings were conducted at the event. A cross section of the trade express their views on the China market.

Lydia Li, Deputy General Manager, ITB China

Over the past few months, outbound travel from China has been witnessing an uptrend with Chinese travellers opting for MICE and business travel to the Middle East. According to the recent report by Trip.com, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Turkey, and the Maldives experienced high order growth rates from China.

Amr Elkady, CEO, Egypt Tourism Authority

2023 was a good year for Egypt as we received 230,000 visitors and we are looking at closing 2024 with 300,000 visitors from China. The Chinese leisure market has grown exponentially over the past few years and the increase of air connectivity is one of the main reasons for this.

Amr Adawy, Vice President Commercial, EgyptAir

We will be increasing flights from Cairo to China, as it is an important market for us. Currently, we fly four times a week to Shanghai, and we are hoping to increase it to daily flights and go a step beyond and add destinations such as Hong Kong as well. We operate to four cities in China; will be adding two more.

Abdelkhalek Mostafa, Regional e-commerce Director Pickalbatros Hotels and Resorts

Chinese travellers have become one of the main source markets for us. The main attraction for the Chinese is our world famous theme park ‘Neverland City’ in Hurghada. Ensuring that the source markets are provided all facilities is a key factor. Hence, we too have introduced many facilities.

Xiong Xing, COO, Trip.com Group

As of now, China’s cross-border flight capacity has recovered to 71 per cent in 2024 compared to the same period in 2019, while the outbound travel search index for 2024 has risen by 63 per cent compared to 2019, with travellers experiencing high demand for travel, which is a good sign.

Astrid Kastberg, General Manager, Yalago

China represents one of our fastest-growing source markets for international travel. With the luxury segment prominent, we are finding Chinese travellers booking a more extensive range of five-star hotels, including across the UAE’s cityscapes, islands, and beaches.

Compiled by Dr Shehara Rizly

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