Today’s podcast discusses Chinese tourists in the UK, Etihad’s growth plans, and Japan’s efforts to meant tourism demands.
Good morning from Skift. It’s Thursday, November 16. Here’s what you need to know about the business of travel today.
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The United Kingdom is seeing a gradual return of Chinese visitors, but a full recovery won’t take place until 2025, writes Global Tourism Reporter Dawit Habtemariam.
VisitBritain CEO Patricia Yates told Parliament on Tuesday that Chinese visitor numbers would slowly build back to pre-Covid levels. Flight bookings from China to the UK are down 50% from 2019. Yates attributed that massive drop to Beijing not approving the UK for outbound group travel until August.
Chinese visitors were the second-highest spenders in the UK behind American tourists prior to the pandemic.
Next, Etihad Airways has plans for significant growth. The company aims to double its fleet and triple its passenger number by 2030, writes Reporter Ajay Awtaney.
Etihad Aviation Group CEO Antonoaldo Neves said the company plans to increase its fleet size to 150 aircraft. That’s a part of its growth plan named Project 2030, a year Etihad wants to fly 33 million passengers. Awtaney reports the company expects to increase its number of partnerships over the next six months.
Finally, Japan has seen a major tourism boom recently. But tours and activities operators say they’re experiencing a capacity crunch in the country, writes Travel Experiences Reporter Selene Brophy.
The Japan National Tourism Organization said visitors to Japan topped pre-Covid levels for the first time in October. However, Wei-chun Liu, chief operating officer of experiences booking company KKday, said Japan has struggled to manage the surge in travel demand. Liu said KKday has seen constraints in areas such as bus and tour guide capacity.