Our Privacy Statement & Cookie Policy

By continuing to browse our site you agree to our use of cookies, revised Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can change your cookie settings through your browser.

I agree

Graphics: China's tourism industry sees strong recovery in 2023


China's tourism industry almost brought 2023 revenue back to its pre-pandemic level, as recovery was largely driven by pent-up domestic demand after the removal of cross-city travel restrictions in January 8 and the accelerated integration of "culture, sports, and tourism."

Graphics: China's tourism industry sees strong recovery in 2023

The country's tourism revenue is expected to reach 5.2 trillion yuan ($730 billion) in 2023, which is 91 percent of the 2019 figure, according to the China Tourism Academy, a research institution under the Chinese Ministry of Culture and Tourism.

The tourism sector was a major economic contributor, accounting for 11 percent of the country's GDP in 2019. Its recovery was a result of the country's efforts to stimulate consumption and revitalize the economy.

Although the increase in COVID-19 infection rates after the sudden removal of restrictions led to uncertainty and hesitancy to travel in the short term, domestic travel sentiment recovered strongly by the Spring Festival holidays as China was past its infection peak.

The Spring Festival holidays in late January saw 308 million domestic trips, generating 376 billion yuan in tourism revenue. The domestic travel volume has recovered to 88.6 percent of the 2019 figure, while spending has bounced back to 73.1 percent of pre-pandemic levels.

The Labor Day holiday in late April and early May also saw a staggering 274 million domestic trips, with a nearly 20 percent increase over the pre-pandemic level. The spending was 148 billion yuan, about 100.7 percent of the 2019 level.

The country's eight-day National Day holiday sparked a travel and consumption frenzy. The extended vacation period registered 826 million domestic trips, with an increase of 4.1 percent. The holiday generated tourism revenue of 753 billion yuan, growing 1.5 percent from the 2019 level.

To attract tourists, local governments organized a number of events, including music festivals, concerts, exhibitions and sports competitions. Nearly 100 concerts and performances have taken place in major Chinese cities during the holiday to fuel the local tourism boom.

The Hangzhou Asian Games, which coincided with the Mid-Autumn Festival and National Day holiday and featured the largest number of participants in the event's history, stimulated the local economy.

Hotel bookings in Asian Games cities increased over 200 percent compared with the same period in 2019. Dine-in restaurant orders in Hangzhou surged 443 percent, sports and fitness orders in the city shot up 762 percent compared to the pre-pandemic level.

The year 2023 also witnessed the recovery of China's civil aviation. Domestic flight passenger volume in 2023 surpassed that of 2019, and it is expected to increase 19 percent in 2024 compared with 2023.

Search Trends