In June, the Chinese share of tourist spending in shops reached 26 percent. The proportion attributed to Russians fell to 24 percent. But in January of last year, the Russians accounted for some 68 percent, while just 4 percent of expenditure was down to Chinese visitors.
Further growth in Chinese spending can be expected from the autumn with the launch of a direct Beijing-Prague air link by Global Blue, a company which arranges for non-EU tourists to obtain refunds on VAT paid on their purchases. The number of Chinese tourists arriving in the Czech Republic this year could be as high as 270,000. Last year, the figure was 211,000, around one-fifth more than were seen in 2013.
“It is not only the Chinese, it is also people from other Asian countries who are strengthening their presence on the market,” said Zuzana Roubíčková, marketing manager at Global Blue. “For example, we can refer to the Taiwanese and the Thais, the latter of which are there at the top for the highest average individual outlay,” she added. Among those confirming the perspective given by
Roubíčková, was Radek Váňa, the spokesperson of Botanicus, a producer and vendor of natural cosmetics.
“Our staff manage to communicate with both the Thais and Koreans, while we can offer them catalogues we have prepared in their languages,” he also noted. On average, the Thai visitor in the Czech Republic spends CZK 31,329. Second place goes to the Chinese. A Chinese visitor spends, on average, CZK 21,443, an American CZK 15,639 and a Russian CZK 7,839.