Mainland Chinese language vacationers visiting Hong Kong have a tendency to go to totally different procuring shops to purchase luxurious items in accordance with their totally different motivations, conclude Dr Sam Kim of the College of Lodge and Tourism Administration (SHTM) at The Hong Kong Polytechnic College and his co-researchers. In a not too long ago revealed examine the researchers revealed that mainland vacationers who store for luxurious items are motivated by “materialism, a need for social standing or to adapt with others”, and these variations of their nature affect not solely what they purchase, however the place they purchase.
Procuring is a significant driver of tourism worldwide, and cities reminiscent of Las Vegas, Dubai, Paris, London and Singapore have “all change into locations related to procuring tourism”, the researchers be aware. These locations appeal to each regional and worldwide consumers – many vacationers from Europe and the US “journey to Asia-Pacific procuring locations”, whereas vacationers from the Asia-Pacific “additionally have a tendency to rearrange procuring excursions to Europe and america”. Vacation spot entrepreneurs use procuring “as a software with which to construct a vacation spot’s model fairness” and improve its competitiveness.
Procuring tourism advantages not simply the nationwide economic system of such locations, but in addition native communities, as a result of whereas an upscale downtown shopping center sells luxurious worldwide branded items, rural farms and conventional craftspeople promote their home made merchandise on to international vacationers. Procuring, in accordance with the researchers, supplies large financial advantages. For example, in Hong Kong, some of the famend procuring locations worldwide, greater than 60% of the HK$359 billion revenue from tourism is spent on procuring.
In a extra common sense, mainland Chinese language vacationers spend a very massive proportion of their finances on procuring – over 70%, in contrast with solely 20% for North American vacationers. The researchers clarify that “Chinese language is a Confucian tradition” that’s “very vulnerable to outrageous consumption”, and the “seen indicators of luxurious are the most important motivation to purchase luxuries”. Chinese language vacationers worth social relationships and social standing, and a technique of attaining excessive standing is thru materials possessions. Thus, many Chinese language go to Hong Kong both to purchase luxurious items in upscale shops or to purchase counterfeit luxurious items at native avenue markets. Procuring additionally provides these vacationers “pleasurable experiential worth throughout journey” and encourages return visits.
Not too long ago, nevertheless, Hong Kong’s repute as a procuring heaven has been threatened by an obvious downturn in retail gross sales, suggesting that it might be shedding its attract. Therefore, the researchers aimed to look at mainland Chinese language vacationers’ motivations and satisfaction and the way totally different shops for procuring “drive vacationers’ intentions to buy luxuries” in Hong Kong.
The researchers carried out an internet survey of mainland Chinese language who had purchased luxurious manufacturers throughout a visit to Hong Kong inside the final yr, attracting 314 usable responses. The respondents had been primarily younger adults with a excessive stage of schooling (greater than 80% had a postgraduate diploma) and what the researchers describe as “good buying energy”. That they had visited Hong Kong greater than thrice on common, and for about three and a half days per journey.
Other than demographic data, the survey assessed the respondents’ stage of settlement with 17 statements about their motivations for procuring in Hong Kong. After analysing the information, the objects had been grouped into three components reflecting “materialism”, “need for social standing” and “conformity with others”.
The materialism issue included objects reminiscent of “If I might afford it, I’d journey for procuring functions extra usually in HK” and “Procuring in HK will increase my worth from the viewpoint of others”. Individuals who endorse these views “worth possessions because of their value, moderately than the possessions’ utility”, argue the researchers.
The second issue, need for social standing, included objects reminiscent of “Procuring in HK is an emblem of success and status” and “Procuring in HK means wealth”. Consumers who agree with these statements purchase luxurious merchandise “to enhance their shallowness and social standing”, the researchers counsel.
In distinction, the conformity issue included statements reminiscent of “I wish to store in HK as a result of my acquaintances have been procuring right here”. Respondents who endorse these views, the researchers, cause, are possible to purchase luxurious items in order that they’ll “be accepted by a specific social group”.
The researchers then used the knowledge on motivations along with data on “procuring expertise satisfaction” and three sorts of shops – markets, malls and retailers – to analyse how these components affect the intention to buy luxurious items in Hong Kong.
Maybe unsurprisingly, the vacationers with a excessive sense of materialism had a excessive intention to buy luxuries. Nonetheless, this solely gave the impression to be true for procuring in markets, not in retailers. The researchers clarify that this can be as a result of “materialists are very involved with prices” and so they can “purchase extra for much less” at markets, both by shopping for counterfeits or by bargaining for decrease costs.
These vacationers with each excessive and low needs for conformity had excessive intentions to buy luxuries, indicating that they “use luxuries to strengthen their interpersonal relationships”. Nonetheless, the connection was solely evident in retailers, moderately than in markets, which means that vacationer consumers pushed by conformity have a tendency to purchase real items that point out their membership of a specific reference group.
The surveyed vacationers who positioned a substantial amount of significance on social standing had greater intentions to buy luxurious items, and once more they’re extra possible to take action in retailers moderately than markets. Outlets, the researchers clarify, have greater standing than markets as a result of they’re “promoting originals whereas the markets are promoting counterfeits or bargains”.
Curiously, nevertheless, satisfaction had a higher affect on intentions to buy in markets than in retailers, which means that “procuring is all about interplay with locals”. Certainly, the authors counsel that this discovering reinforces “the conclusion that the absence of human relationships in malls is lowering their significance as a tourism retail outlet”.
The researchers conclude that luxurious is an “intrinsic motivation” that gives consumers with social standing and fulfils their want for conformity. Their findings present tourism managers with a greater understanding of the components that encourage vacationers to “store for luxurious objects throughout totally different shops”. Vacationers who’re motivated by social standing and conformity choose to buy luxurious items in retailers, whereas those that are motivated by materialism choose to buy in markets, the place they get pleasure from bargaining for higher costs and derive higher satisfaction from interacting with the locals.
Total, although, the researchers argue that “conformity with others is an important driver of vacationer consumers in HK”. But they warning that the findings relate particularly to Chinese language vacationers, and additional analysis is required to discover whether or not the identical outcomes could be discovered in numerous cultures and locations.
Correia, Antonia, Kozak, Metin, and Kim, Seongseop (Sam). (2018). Luxurious Procuring Orientations of Mainland Chinese language Vacationers in Hong Kong: Their Procuring Vacation spot. Tourism Economics, 24(1), 92-108.

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About PolyU’s College of Lodge and Tourism Administration
For near 40 years, PolyU’s College of Lodge and Tourism Administration has refined a particular imaginative and prescient of hospitality and tourism schooling and change into a world-leading resort and tourism college. Rated No. 1 on the planet within the “Hospitality and Tourism Administration” class in accordance with ShanghaiRanking’s International Rating of Educational Topics 2017 and 2018, positioned No. 1 on the planet within the “Hospitality, Leisure, Sport & Tourism” topic space by the CWUR Rankings by Topic 2017 and ranked among the many high 3 “Hospitality and Leisure Administration” establishments globally within the QS World College Rankings by Topic 2017 and 2018, the SHTM is an emblem of excellence within the discipline, exemplifying its motto of Main Hospitality and Tourism.
With 75 educational workers drawing from 22 nations and areas, the College provides programmes at ranges starting from undergraduate levels to doctoral levels. In 2012, the SHTM was bestowed the McCool Breakthrough Award by the Worldwide Council on Lodge, Restaurant, and Institutional Schooling (I-CHRIE) recognising its breakthrough within the type of its instructing and analysis resort – Lodge ICON – the guts of the College’s progressive method to hospitality and tourism schooling. A member of the UNWTO Data Community, the SHTM can be the editorial residence of Asia Pacific Journal of Tourism Analysis, Journal of Journey and Tourism Advertising, Journal of Instructing in Journey and Tourism and Journal of China Tourism Analysis.