With the Year of the Rooster coming in a few weeks, Chinese visitors to London could spend more than £11 million.
According to data from Worldpay, department stores and boutiques that cater to high-end clients may emerge as the big winners of the annual spring festival, with forecasts calling for Chinese tourists to spend 40 percent more on their cards than the average for that time of year. The report noted it could even be higher than that this year because of the increase in the number of Chinese tourists coming to the U.K. Spending by Chinese visitors has increased 24 percent as bargain hunters are hoping to take advantage of a decline in the value of the pound against the yuan on the heels of the Brexit. The combination of the weak pound and an increase in demand for luxury items by China has morphed the U.K. into a highly desirable place to shop, noted the report.
The report noted that, in addition to spending money in stores, Chinese tourists are also expected to plunk down money for museums, art galleries and other cultural events. Expectations are that spending in those categories will increase 27 percent. Business at bars and restaurants is also expected to benefit from the influx of Chinese tourists. Chinese New Year is typically a busy time of year for Chinese tourists with about 6 million people expected to travel outside China during the holiday.
“As the Chinese New Year is seen in across the world, it looks as though Britain’s businesses are set for a Golden Week ‘gold rush.’ With the weakened pound, London is much cheaper this year for Chinese visitors, and we expect popular shopping destinations to reap the benefits from the influx of free-spending tourists,” said James Frost, CMO of Worldpay U.K.