ILTM: Habits of Asian luxury travelers shifting

Jeri Clausing
Jeri Clausing

The motivations behind one of the fastest growing segments of luxury travelers are shifting.

That's according to research presented at ILTM Asia this week showing that the region's millionaires are less motivated by shopping and status, formerly their top reasons for traveling, and more interested in personal growth, quality of life and eco-friendliness.

ILTM commissioned the survey from Agility Research & Strategy, which interviewed 903 people across China, India, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Korea and Japan with a household net worth of $1 million or more.

The trends that it found track what the luxury sector has been seeing for years with Western travelers. And it will no doubt be watched closely by the luxury travel companies that have been for years been working to gain an edge as  Asian travelers, particularly from China and India, spend more and venture farther and farther across the globe.

Among the key takeways:

  • Asian millionaires' reasons to travel are shifting from status and recognition to personal growth and better quality of life. Increasingly, business trips become a mix of business and leisure with their families.
  • There is increased awareness that luxury travel is as much about experiences as accommodations, including authentic food experiences.
  • Shopping is becoming less relevant. Asian millionaires' interests are becoming more sophisticated, with city tours, diving, beach, food, amusement parks, spas and hot springs being some of the most mentioned reasons to travel.
  • Over 85% of millionaires surveyed in China consider a hotel's eco-friendliness important.

According to the study, there are now more than 6 million millionaires in the APAC region.

"This is a powerhouse market which continues to grow with sustained optimism," said Alison Gilmore, director of the ILTM Portfolio. "However, at the same time, we also can see that their travel habits are changing."

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