Chinese tourist numbers climb

  • 29/08/2015
Chinese tourists in New York (Reuters)
Chinese tourists in New York (Reuters)

More than 100 million Chinese travelled abroad for leisure last year, state media reports, marking an almost 20 percent increase from the year before.

The official Xinhua news agency said on Friday (local time) that about 107 million Chinese ventured overseas in 2014 as tourists, citing a report by the China Tourism Academy, an institute under the China National Tourism Administration.

Xinhua quoted Dai Bin, the head of the academy, as saying the rising number of tourists going abroad was due to more relaxed visa policies in receiving countries.

The report predicted that the number of Chinese tourists heading overseas will increase more than 16 percent next year, Xinhua said.

The academy's report also said that Chinese tourists spent US$164.8 billion (NZ$255 billion) while overseas last year, a total about four times higher than in 2008, Xinhua reported.

Chinese tourist numbers have dramatically increased over the past two decades as the economy has boomed to become the world's second largest.

The country's currency, the yuan, has also steadily strengthened over a period of years, making overseas holidays more affordable.