SHANGHAI: Culture travel is on a fast growth path as recent findings of the ITB China Travel Trends Report revealed.
The surveyed Chinese travel agents see the fastest growth rate in culture travel, with 62 per cent of the respondents reporting an expected growth of 30 per cent or more over the next three years.
Local experience programs and scenery are what travellers care most about when going on a culture trip, according to the surveyed travel agents.
At the core of this theme is a wish to experience the local culture of a destination and to understand it better by learning more about its history and its customs. This can be either through cultural institutions such as museums, through immersion in the local culture, or through attending cultural events. Culture travel is also the theme for which travellers, according to survey respondents, have the highest willingness to pay. The ITB China Travel Trends Report was created in collaboration with the international consulting and research company Kairos Future and will be presented at ITB China, set to take place from the May 15 to 17 in Shanghai.
The stories of a place are important to inspire cultural travellers to visit a destination. Travellers may be inspired through films, history books, food, or some other experience that connects culturally to a destination. Apart from museums and other traditional institutions, more immersive travel products are gaining popularity and the demand for different cultural experiences is becoming increasingly diverse. In some aspects, culture travel is traditional: this is the travel theme in which traditional tourism sights, in particular museums and spots with historic significance, are most important. Other travel products are also becoming popular and the demand is getting increasingly diverse.
With many culture travellers – who are typically older than travellers opting for other themes – facing a language barrier when traveling abroad, Chinese-speaking guides will stay in demand and are described by interviewees as an upgraded service for Chinese travellers.