Southeast Asia top choice for Chinese outbound tourists
Southeast Asian countries remain top destinations for Chinese outbound tourists during the National Day holiday, according to the China Tourism Academy.
Monitoring data from the academy showed that Thailand, Singapore, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines are among the 10 most popular destinations for outbound travelers during the holiday from Oct. 1 to 8, said Dai Bin, head of the academy.
Over 45 percent of the travelers chose Southeast Asian countries, Dai said. He attributed the boom to a rapidly increasing number of flights between China and its southeastern neighbors and the latter's favorable visa policies for Chinese tourists.
Among the 10 ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) members, nine offer visa-free or visa-on-arrival policies for Chinese tourists. More than 2,700 flights fly between China and ASEAN countries every week.
Lu Lingxi from south China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region said his family had not thought of going to Bali until Sept. 29. However, the late decision did not disrupt their trip, thanks to the visa-free policy of Indonesia.
In 2016, more than 30 million trips were made between China and ASEAN countries, compared with 10 million in 2011. The two are each other's largest overseas tourist destinations and largest sources of tourists, said a report on bilateral tourism cooperation issued in September.
2017 marks the China-ASEAN Year of Tourism. Promoting regional economic integration through tourism is part of the theme of the 14th China-ASEAN Expo held in Guangxi last month.