February 6, 2023 is a time node that has attracted much attention in the tourism industry: after three years, my country has resumed pilot outbound group travel and "air ticket + hotel" business to 20 countries including Thailand.

  On the same day, travel agencies and tourism companies in many places across the country issued "starting groups". Among them, the first batch of outbound tour group tourists took the flight from Guangzhou to Dubai at 0:15, while the 14 tourists in the "starting group" for outbound travel in Chengdu were In the afternoon, fly to Phuket, Thailand.

How enthusiastic are people about traveling?

According to reports, a travel agency in Guangzhou launched the first tour product of "New Zealand's North and South Islands 10 Days" on February 3. The tour fee is about 26,000 yuan per person, and the 40 places are sold out within 1 minute.

  With the resumption of outbound group tours, will the market usher in a rapid explosion?

Compared with before, will the routes and prices of outbound travel be restructured?

  How hot is outbound travel?

  Some tourism products are available in seconds as soon as they go online

  At 10:30 am on the 6th, in the T1 International/Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan Terminal of Shuangliu Airport, the continuous stream of passengers sent a signal-tourists' confidence in travel is rapidly recovering, and outbound travel is getting hotter.

  Chen Lan, a citizen of Chengdu, and his family of three were waiting here early. They will take the flight departing at 14:50 to Phuket, Thailand, and start a journey of 6 days and 5 nights.

Chen Lan said that this was her third trip to Thailand, and it was also her son's long-awaited high school graduation trip. "It's finally here!"

  Judging from the first outbound tour groups sent out in many places across the country, cities such as Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, and Chengdu have all sent outbound tour groups with different destinations. There are "Thailand first group", "Singapore first group", "Egypt "Starting Mission" "UAE Dubai, Abu Dhabi Starting Mission", etc., and this is just the beginning.

  "Next, we will strengthen the layout and expansion of various destinations in Southeast Asia that have been opened, including the route to Phuket Island. We plan to maintain the frequency of daily tours to form a relatively normal market supply. At the same time, we will gradually open new routes from March. Open a series of overseas destinations, such as the first tour to Russia and so on.” said Gao Lei, general manager of Chengdu China Youth Travel Service Co., Ltd.

  The reporter learned that on February 7th and 8th, many travel agencies and online travel companies launched a series of group tours such as Russia, the United Arab Emirates, and Chiang Mai, Thailand, etc. "Air ticket + hotel" products are also launched one after another.

  The recovery of tourist confidence is also reflected in the gradual pick-up in demand for overseas long-distance travel.

According to reports, Guangzhou GZL International Travel Service Co., Ltd. launched the first tour product of "New Zealand North and South Island 10 Days" on February 3. The tour fee is about 26,000 yuan per person, and the 40 places are sold out within 1 minute.

On Ctrip, the first New Zealand outbound tour group departing on March 18, with an average price of 27,999 yuan per capita, was sold out immediately after the sale.

  At the same time, on major online travel platforms, bookings for outbound travel products have also increased accordingly.

According to data from Ctrip, in the week after the Spring Festival, the booking volume of outbound group tours and "air ticket + hotel" package products increased by more than 3 times compared with the week of the holiday.

"This data reflects that tourists are gradually regaining confidence in outbound travel. At the same time, travel agencies have more products on the shelves, providing people with more diverse choices for travel." Jiang Wen, CEO of Ctrip Group Tour, said.

  How have routes and prices changed?

  Focus on high-quality goods and customization, and the price has risen

  The reporter sorted out the first overseas travel tour groups issued by various places on February 6. There are two characteristics worthy of attention-compared with the previous large outbound travel tour groups with 30-40 people at every turn, several first tour groups have controlled the number of customers. Maintain 10~25 people.

From the perspective of the composition of tourists, it covers all age groups, old, middle-aged and young, which also means that tourists have different needs for travel products.

  "Currently, tourists' consumption concepts and consumption trends have undergone many changes." Gao Lei said that tourists originally wanted to go out and have a look, but after three years of backlog, tourists' willingness has changed from simply "going out." "Take a look" has been transformed into an in-depth experience tour, which puts forward more requirements for the experience and quality of the tourism team.

  Xu Wei, the travel consultant for the first tour from Chengdu to Phuket, Thailand, has a more intuitive feeling about this.

Xu Wei said frankly that although the Phuket itinerary is a classic itinerary in the past, there are still many unknown changes, which require careful observation and research by professional tourism service practitioners.

He not only helps tourists with travel arrangements and itinerary consultation, but also does a lot of "homework" in advance about the latest policy requirements of the destination.

  In fact, not only has there been many new changes in the demand for outbound travel, but the products and prices of outbound travel are also being restructured.

The reporter learned that at present, CYTS Chengdu has designed and launched more than 30 outbound travel products, involving more than 10 countries and regions such as Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Russia, Maldives, and the United Arab Emirates, mainly independent and semi-independent travel products.

  A calculation from a travel platform shows that the per capita cost of staying in a five-diamond luxury hotel in Thailand for 7 days in February is 6,000-10,000 yuan, and the 7-day cost of going to Malaysia, Vietnam, Cambodia and other countries ranges from 4,500 to 6,500 yuan. wait.

  "Compared with 2019, the price has indeed risen." Gao Lei said, one of the reasons is the impact of the recovery of resources on the route, and the other reason is that the tourism ground service system of overseas destinations has not yet returned to a very complete or mature state. , the entire market supply still needs to be improved, and the price is slightly higher.

  In addition, after the epidemic, tourists have higher requirements for tourism quality. At present, the tourism products launched on the market are mainly high-quality goods and customized ones.

But generally speaking, the growth rate will not be very large, and with the gradual recovery of the supply chain, especially the recovery of the supply of international flights, this trend will be eased.

  Will there be explosive growth?

  It is expected to recover to 40%~50% of 2019

  With the restart of the domestic outbound group tour market on February 6, both traditional travel agencies and online travel platforms have mentioned that both the number of views of outbound routes and the number of consultations related to passports and visas have increased significantly. Thailand, the United Arab Emirates , Egypt, New Zealand, Maldives, Laos, Indonesia and other destinations are popular among tourists.

So, will the outbound tourism market usher in explosive growth after the restart?

How long will it take to send out large batches?

  "I personally think that this year's outbound travel market will usher in a retaliatory rebound, and the overall market situation will recover relatively, but there is still a long way to go before returning to the level of 2019." Gao Lei said frankly, according to the China Tourism Academy According to the report, outbound travel this year is expected to recover to 40% to 50% of that in 2019.

  In fact, judging from the current market feedback, the actual number of registered tourists is still not on a large scale. Some tourists cannot apply for passports after they expire, and they have concerns about the price of outbound travel and the entry epidemic prevention policy of the destination country. outbound group tours are still on the sidelines.

In addition, "subject to factors such as the capacity of international routes, the supply of destination hotels, and the limited reception capacity of ground operators, the conditions for the large-scale restart of outbound group tours are not yet available."

  Zhou Mingqi, founder of Jingjian Think Tank, an industrial economic consulting organization, also believes that the outbound travel business will restart soon, but it will take longer to return to the pre-epidemic state.

"By this year's '11' holiday, outbound tourism can recover to 60% to 70% of the pre-epidemic level, which is already very optimistic."

  However, an obvious message is that on various online travel platforms, the search volume and inquiries for outbound travel during the two small and long holidays of "Qingming Festival" and "May Day" have begun to appear, and the search volume related to "Qingming" has increased by 127% from the previous month. Searches related to "May Day" increased by 187% month-on-month.

Tongcheng Travel expects that this year's outbound travel will usher in a round of explosive growth, and it is expected to return to the pre-epidemic level from the "May 1st" to the summer.

Chengdu Commercial Daily-Red Star News reporter Li Yanqin