Chinese domestic flights and hi-speed train links are back to their pre-virus levels of volume and there is still a strong demand for travel with 100 million trips in the first week of May and 80 million in the three-day Dragon Boat festival in June.
However, a fast return to international travel is now looking unlikely given the virus is still not under control and air travel is extremely restricted, Prof. Wolfgang Arlt, head of the China Outbound Tourism Research Institute said on a webinar organised by Buzz Travel.
Arlt said in the next 12 to 18 months hygiene and sanitation will play a central role in regaining the trust of Chinese guests.
The Chinese outbound traveller is the biggest source market for Asia’s casinos and reopening the borders to allow travel will be key to recovery.
Prof. Arlt said there have been changes in the preferences of the Chinese traveller post the virus, with a greater emphasis being placed on family travel. There is also a greater emphasis on nature experiences and experiences in general, rather than shopping.
They also want to have more contact with locals, but don’t want to travel to overcrowded places.
Two of Malaysia's opposition politicians are raising concern as to why Genting Malaysia's casino remains open at Resorts World Genting when all bars and restaurants are shut under the country's movement control order.
As we all know, the industry has been hit hard, and some countries have had more prolonged and repeated impacts than others. So, it’s been a two-stage ‘recovery’ with Macau now leading the way, and other countries seemingly recovering and then going backwards into lockdown again. We are very hopeful for our customers that we will see a stronger bounce back on reopening as we have seen in other countries, such as Australia and in the USA.
For this edition of our magazine, we focus on Southeast Asia, with a particular look at the Philippines. The country’s casino industry has been among the hardest hit in Asia, with the integrated resorts in Manila’s Entertainment City having remained mostly closed to the general public since the beginning of the crisis last year.
The world is bouncing back, or at least coming to grips with the fact that going forward not much will be the same as before. Commendably, this industry quickly understood the need to adapt to a new normal, and that the days of targeting the low hanging fruit of the VIP sector are gone.