Asians get­ting into ad­ven­ture travel

Action Asia - - NEWS & VIEWS -

AT LEAST 130 MIL­LION Chi­nese take part in soft ad­ven­ture travel an­nu­ally – hik­ing and other low-in­ten­sity ac­tiv­i­ties – while 60 mil­lion try sports per­ceived as riskier such as rock climb­ing and glid­ing, ac­cord­ing to the first Ad­ven­ture Travel World Lead­ers Fo­rum that took place in Bei­jing in early June. The Chi­nese have be­come more ac­cept­ing of risk-tak­ing or travel to ex­treme en­vi­ron­ments in re­cent years, ac­cord­ing to the In­ter­na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of Antarc­tica Tour Op­er­a­tors. They say China has now over­taken Aus­tralia as the sec­ond largest source of trav­ellers to Antarc­tica, for in­stance, ac­count­ing for 12% of the 46,000 to­tal vis­i­tors last year. They are also the largest group of vis­i­tors to Rus­sia’s Arc­tic re­gion, where the sight­ings of the North­ern Lights and po­lar bears are much sought-af­ter. Pres­i­dent of the China Tourism As­so­ci­a­tion, Duan Qiang (shown right), said the in­dus­try’s de­vel­op­ment re­lies on the tourism mar­ke­teers’ ef­fort to of­fer ever more cre­ative prod­ucts and ser­vices, ac­cord­ing to China Daily. In­dia is an­other mar­ket show­ing in­creas­ing in­ter­est in ad­ven­ture. A re­port by ex­pe­ri­en­tial travel-book­ing plat­form Thril­lophilia in April said that 28% of re­spon­dents there go on at least five ad­ven­ture trips in a year. The study, which sur­veyed 10,000 trav­ellers and 1,800 travel part­ners, fur­ther showed that ad­ven­ture tourism is gain­ing pop­u­lar­ity not just among young trav­ellers, but also among re­spon­dents aged 35 and above as well. On a global scale, Al­lied Mar­ket Re­search val­ued the ad­ven­ture tourism mar­ket at $446bn in 2016 and pro­jects it to reach $1.3tn by 2023.

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