Travel Expo Survey Reveals Public Visitors Prefer Free Independent Travel (FIT)

Travel Expo Survey Reveals Public Visitors Prefer Free Independent Travel (FIT)

ITE & MICE have separate trade and public days and visitor promotions. Thus, exhibitors can meet, in ITE & MICE, visitors from both the travel trade and the public especially the highly significant FIT segment of Hong Kong.

A survey with over 3300 respondents, collected online and onsite at ITE & MICE 2011, found 43% of the Expo’s public visitors had university education, while another 24% post-secondary. Such strong education background underlines they mostly come from well off segments of Hong Kong.

An absolute majority of the public visitors of ITE & MICE are from age groups active in travel. In fact, 41% of them are aged between 15 and 34, while another 55% between 35 and 65. Also, female visitors outnumbered male by 60% to 40%.

ITE & MICE public visitors are travel enthusiasts: 58% having made three or more, and overall 93% made one or more overnight leisure trips in the past twelve months. Also, 72% of them prefer traveling in FIT while another 5% in tailored made groups.

On their purposes of visiting ITE & MICE, 18% of the respondents interested in booking tours, 30% in attending travel seminars, and over 95% to collect travel info. Also, 66.2% of them are repeated visitors.

FIT is highly significant in Hong Kong’s outbound market, as English is being widely spoken and visits to over 140 international destinations visa free! For example, Japan, which drew some half a million arrivals from Hong Kong last year, reported in 2009 that FIT accounted for over 70% of inbound from Hong Kong.

ITE & MICE 2011 drew 69320 visitors in the two public days. While an absolute majority of them come from Hong Kong, more from Guangdong were expected this year as some 10000 public day tickets were distributed, mostly through travel agents, in major cities in Guangdong weeks before the opening.

The survey also asked respondents to cite destination(s) of their overnight holiday(s) in the past twelve months. Not surprisingly, 65% reported having visited China (mainland), 47% to Macau, 45% to South and SE Asia, 31% to North Asia, 15% to Europe, 7% to the Oceania, 6% to the Americas and 4% to the Middle East & Africa,. As the survey was made in June with the nearest holidays being Easter and some long weekends, replies therefore are likely biased towards short haul holidays.

ITE & MICE has two days for trade, which this year drew 11820 visitors with 27% of trade and corporate visitors come from mainland China and abroad; travel agents / operators and corporate visitors respectively accounting for 47% and 24%.

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