China is one of the key target markets for the tourism sector in Azerbaijan whose importance is currently growing, as witnessed by the rise in the number of guests, overnight stays and expenditures.
Significance for Azerbaijan
In 2018, citizens of China travelled abroad more often as the number of tours for that year increased by 7% to 130.51 million, according to a report by the Chinese Institute for the Study of Tourism. The highest rate of tourists is observed during the spring and winter seasons. Chinese tourists appreciate Azerbaijan’s history, culture, nature, hospitality, cuisine, and its mix of modern look and ancient soul. They can fly directly from Beijing and Urumqi.
The Chinese guest
Chinese tourists travel most in spring and autumn and most attracted to sightseeing tourism, historical and cultural places. They spend about 4-5 days in one country and often travel more on combined tours.
Information sources: The internet, friends’ recommendations, videos, magazines, TV programmes, social networks (WeChat, Weibo).
High internet usage: Popular social media sites like YouTube, Facebook and Instagram are banned in China. But there are alternatives like WeChat, Weibo and Youku.
Travel decision-making: The Chinese plan their trips in half a year ahead and, as already noted, prefer combined tours.
Means of transport: Chinese tourists mostly travel by plane.
Main holiday interests: City holidays, family/children’s resorts, shopping, nature and eco-tourism, wellness and medical treatment.
Activities: Sightseeing, trying local food and drink, participating in master classes, shopping.
Preferences for destination choice: Safety, hospitality, gastronomy, rich history and culture.
Most visited places: Baku, Sheki, Ganja, Lankaran.
Regional Manager for East Asia