Skiing is not the most popular pastime in China, with a participation rate lower than 1%, according to an international ski study report. Most practitioners do it occasionally, that is to say once a year and usually do not quit the beginner stage. The tracks generally suffer from very poor infrastructure, which is why Chinese tourists are leaving the country to ski, despite a strong potential in China.

Ski stations want to seize the opportunity

Chinese ski instructor Li exercises with clients during a private beginner ski course in the alpine resort of Zermatt

Chinese tourists are increasingly looking for high quality services during their trip. Group travels are definitely over now! Chinese tourists are aiming at customized travel and are demanding attention. A lot of Chinese tourists faced problems during Package Tour, travel agencies forced them to do shopping and they were touching commissions according to the amount of goods bought.

These claims did not fall on deaf ears. Indeed Swiss ski resorts have sought to answer this need by hiring Chinese ski instructors. This extremely proactive decision was made in order to attract more Chinese tourists, who are a great potential for tourism. Let’s keep in mind that Chinese tourists are the travellers who are the biggest spenders when abroad.

Tourism in Switzerland suffered from the recession which strongly affected Europe and therefore has consequently led to a fall in the number of people visiting Switzerland. As Switzerland is a country highly frequented by British people, Italians or Germans, the country has strongly suffered from a wave of cancellations of reservations or price negotiations made by travellers who booked their trip before the economical breakdown.

Chinese tourists consuming habits


Chinese tourists are very different from Western ones, in terms of consuming habits and behaviours before and during trips. Indeed, the last-minute travel practice is very popular in the West, while Chinese plan their trip much longer in advance. Thereby avoiding many inconveniences caused by cancellations.

Chinese tourists are not really into Mono destination holidays, skiing in Switzerland for example will be part of a’ European tour ‘. After Switzerland they will pass through Paris to do a little bit of shopping to finally return to China. Westerners may also be surprised by Chinese people ‘Picture Culture’, who spend endless time to take pictures during their skiing lessons, allowing them to capture their trip.

Attract Chinese tourists

Chinese ski instructor Xu poses on the Kleine Scheidegg in front of the Eiger north face in the ski resort of the Jungfrau region

To attract Chinese tourists, the stations will have to facilitate to the fullest, the travel of the latter through the development of all-inclusive packages, for example. Switzerland should also, like for its chocolates or watches, to make the country a real brand, an extremely popular process among Chinese people. The creation of a brand ‘Switzerland’ help in targeting Chinese tourists.

China could host the 2022 Winter Olympics, this event could greatly boost domestic interest for winter sports. If the interest in skiing is tenfold, the demand will largely grow and the market size will be proportionally increased. This is why it is important to target and answer to the new and more specific needs of Chinese tourists.

You need to know how to engage them, go here and here


My Switzerland