Finland is being marketed as a gateway to Europe by Alitrip, a leading online travel platform in China, says Finpro.
Paavo Virkkunen, the director of Visit Finland at Finpro, estimates that the increasing co-operation with the travel industry giant will bring tens of thousands of visitors annually to Finland, boosting not only the revenues of the domestic tourism industry but also those of retailers and restaurants.
“Chinese visitors spend an average of 650 euros during their visit, ranking among highest-spending groups of visitors,” he reminds.
The behaviour of consumers is changing positively in China, with especially younger consumers having both the possibility and willingness to experience the world, Shaohua Li, the general manager of Alitrip, says according to Talouselämä.
“We know that Europe, destinations such as Northern Finland and the Northern Lights are something Chinese consumers want to experience. We're bringing together those promoting tourism and those providing tourism services so that we can offer the Chinese an easier path to discover new and unique travel destinations,” he tells.
Finnair has similarly expressed its delight with the decision of Alitrip to invest in Finland.
“Finnair predicts that it will fly more than 3,000 Alitrip customers to Finland as early as this winter. The co-operation presents major opportunities for Finland and opens new sales channels for Finnair in what is an important market for us, China,” says Juha Järvinen, the chief commercial officer at the state-owned carrier.
One of the destinations marketed by the online travel platform is Rovaniemi. Alitrip organised a publicity event in the northern city last week that featured the latest winner of the Voice of China and was streamed live to as many as one hundred million viewers in China.
Finpro points out that the number of visitors from China to Finland has grown steadily over the past couple of years.
Chinese tourists made a total of 182,000 overnight stays in Finland in 2015, representing an increase of 40 per cent from the previous year. The growth is set to continue strong, with recent data indicating that some 124,000 people visited Finland from China over the first eight months of the year, signalling a year-on-year increase of 26 per cent, highlights Finpro.
Alitrip is a subsidiary of the Alibaba Group, one of the largest e-commerce companies in the world.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Jussi Nukari – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi