Polish Tourism Organisation participated in the China Outbound Travel & Tourism Market in Beijing, which celebrated its 15th anniversary. For the first time ever the Polish stand hosted as many as four Polish companies: New World, Real Poland, Funclub and Tarifa travel agencies.
A B2B fair focused on outbound tourism, China Outbound Travel & Tourism Market (COTTM) is each year attended by about 4,500 representatives of Chinese travel agencies. According to a survey conducted by the organisers, the largest share of visitors (63%) declares to be interested in European destinations. This year more than 450 exhibitors from 70 countries came to boost the number of incoming Chinese tourists. Polish companies had an opportunity to hold talks with potential partners, present their tourist offer and gain information about operations of the Chinese tourism industry. The fact that the majority of them already confirmed presence at another industry event in May – the forthcoming ITB marketplace in Shanghai – best demonstrates the success achieved by COTTM.
The market also features numerous conferences, launches of tourism-centred reports and discussion panels. This year the Polish Tourism Organisation International Office in Beijing took part in one of the panel sessions. Together with representatives of similar organisations hailing from Serbia, Turkey and Australia we were contemplating the impact of current travel trends in the Chinese market on the promotion of tourist destinations. Panel participants were discussing their experiences in cooperation with Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs) in the promotion of their regions and plans of this year’s operations in the field of digital marketing.
With the currently growing interest in leisure tourism shown by Chinese travellers, both tourism organisations and local travel agencies are facing new challenges to reach potential customers with their tourist offer. As a result, it is becoming increasingly crucial to have a good understanding of the market and be aware of its specific requirements and the needs of Chinese tourists. More and more travel agencies from China contact our office in Beijing wishing to get in touch with highly specialized Polish partners. They are particularly interested in companies focused on a narrow field of tourism: thematic tours, pilgrimages, regional cultural festivals, language youth camps, traditional top-shelf cuisine, as well as interactive workshops allowing Chinese tourists to learn more about our culture and have a good time.
Companies that would like to take advantage of the enormous potential of China’s tourist market should adopt a long-term perspective – starting with offering unique services that would draw the attention of Chinese partners through developing Chinese-language materials to creating accounts in portal and social media networks characteristic for the Chinese market, such as WeChat.