Young Chinese shoppers drive growth in Korea
Published : Oct 17, 2016 - 13:34
Updated : Oct 17, 2016 - 13:34
Chinese tourists in their 20s and 30s are spending more than other age groups while staying in South Korea, helping boost sales linked to the travel industry.

According to Hotel Shilla on Monday, the sales of its affiliated Shilla Duty Free in Jangchung-dong in Seoul from Chinese tourists this year were mostly driven by those in their 20s and 30s, accounting for 36 percent and 41 percent, respectively.

The 77 percent total by Chinese tourists in their 20s and 30s marked a sharp increase from 34 percent in 2009.

The upward trend of sales by young tourists, started in 2009, led to a steady increase in the following years: 53 percent in 2011, 60 percent in 2013 and 74 percent in 2015.

Shilla said 20-somethings turned out to be the main drive behind revenue increase, as their proportion climbed tenfold to 36 percent this year from 4 percent in 2009.

The world’s third biggest duty free shop in the nation, Lotte Duty Free, also estimates that Chinese tourists aged 40 and below have contributed to more than 80 percent of total revenue this year.

The upturn in the number of young Chinese tourists appears to be powered by the traveling boom in China and the popularity of hallyu content.

“Younger Chinese tourists absorbed in K-pop and dramas flock to South Korea, and they spend more,” said an official working in the travel industry.

By Bak Se-hwan (