Shopping To Chinese “Is A Key Priority”Though we’ve come to associate mainland Chinese tourist-shoppers with trips to Hong Kong, it turns out that this group of free-spending tourists is making more of an impact in Singapore than anywhere else, at least on a percentage basis. According to the latest figures from Singapore’s Changi Airport, Chinese nationals contributed to 20 percent of sales at the airport’s retail and food outlets last year, a 40 percent increase compared to 2010.
Though Chinese tourists trail Indonesians as Singapore’s number one source of foreign tourists, the growing presence of the former is reshaping the way vendors are doing business in the city-state’s notoriously well-outfitted airport.
Ms Ivy Wong, Changi Airport’s senior vice- president of airside concession, said Chinese nationals are “a very affluent group of people”.
She added: “Shopping to them, as compared to other nationalities, is a key priority…They are very willing to open their wallets and spend when they travel overseas.”
In the light of this, Ms Wong said the airport will be rolling out programmes to tap on the spending behaviour of Chinese nationals. She declined to reveal details, adding that more will be shared at a later stage.
Tourists from China have proven to be a boost to tourism here, as evident from last week’s tourist-arrival figures. They registered the greatest jump in arrivals among the top 15 territories that visitors to Singapore hail from.
According to preliminary data recently released by the Singapore Tourism Board, the number of visitor arrivals from China reached almost 1.6 million last year, a 35 percent increase compared to about 1.2 million in 2010.