Mainland tourists boost, er, Shenzhen

Not just Hongkongers, but Mainland tourists coming here are going to Shenzhen for the evening…

…a group of tourists planned to visit Tsim Sha Tsui and Mong Kok to take photos, and then go to Shenzhen to stay overnight as Hong Kong hotels are costly.

“We will go back to Shenzhen at night, but we may come again on Friday,” one of them said. “The price of a hotel room in Shenzhen is just a third of that in Hong Kong. That’s a huge difference.”

Hong Kong Tourism Instructors Association chairman Lam Chi-tin said … “The number of inbound tour groups has dropped from over 300 per day before to about 100 to 200 now,” Lam said, adding the period of stay has also decreased to two nights, from three to four nights in the past.

“More tour groups even choose not to stay overnight, which has affected the income of tour guides, resulting in difficulties in attracting new blood to the industry.”

A Reuters story quotes a number of small business owners lamenting poor business in post-Covid/NatSec Hong Kong…

Businesses describe shopping malls as “dead”, with low foot traffic and shops covered with “for lease” or “coming up soon” signs.

Edmund Wong, an accountancy sector lawmaker, told the city’s legislature last Friday that more than 20,000 companies had deregistered in the first quarter of 2024, up more than 70% from the same period last year.

Simon Wong, president of the Hong Kong Federation of Restaurants and Related Trades, told public broadcaster RTHK that he estimated around 200-300 restaurants had closed over the past month, a trend he expects to continue.

…”…prices in Shenzhen, Guangzhou, and even Changsha have hardly changed much  [said Ting Lu, chief China economist at Nomura]. But in Hong Kong … We have found that the price difference has widened, which has encouraged Hong Kong people to go north for consumption.”

After Hong Kong reopened its border post-pandemic with China last year, the Tourism Board recorded a 38.9% drop in mainland visitors in 2023, compared with 2019 before the pandemic.

Spending by same-day mainland tourists plunged 36.4% in 2023, dropping from an average of HK$2,200 per person in 2019 to HK$1,400 after the border reopened last year.

The government tries hard to keep rents as high as possible, yet also crams the place full of tourists who can’t afford to come here.

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11 Responses to Mainland tourists boost, er, Shenzhen

  1. Reactor #4 says:

    People whose default setting was bollocking-on about HK being swamped with Mainlander tourists must now be delighted. Rejoicing at the news I am sure they will.

  2. Chinese Netizen says:

    Meanwhile Japan has to hang a “Sorry Full” sign at the entrance, block views of Mt Fuji and say “VERBOTEN” in parts of Kyoto just to control the hordes at “Instagrammable” areas.

    Yeah, I know it’s due to the Yen rate. But it might also have to do with people not feeling gouged, a civilised environment and bloody good eats from convenience stores up to the most posh sushi houses.

  3. Been here too long says:

    On the theme of price sensitivity, I went to a show flat yesterday for the new Irish sounding property development in Lohas Park, ‘Park Seasons O’East’. It ticks a good chunk of the Hong Kong requirements: on top of an MTR station and a shopping mall, developed by the MTR and Wheelock, which I quite like. Not sure about the school network area but probably not too shabby, although I can’t think of any top names. But I digress.

    Anyway, as it was a public holiday I thought I would have to queue but my friendly Centaline agent, Homan, said it wouldn’t be a problem. So I turned up at Gateway Tower 2 at 2 pm and I was the only one there.

    I was looking at the 1 bedroom Flat G at 325 square feet for possible retirement or for our younger Gen Z daughter (who is getting on our nerves by being Gen Z.) The price was HK$5.1 m for completion within six months or HK$5.4 m for completion when the property is approved for occupation, scheduled for November 2025, which you can do with 10 percent down plus stamp duty.

    Anyway, layout not too bad. Large balcony, bedroom, and bathroom in HK terms but lounge cum kitchen is just not big enough. Also it is surrounded by other blocks at a distance, so at night you might have a sense of imprisonment.

    Of course, HK$5.1m is too much to pay now. You can get a decent new flat in a good part of Tokyo for that and, although mainlanders are still active in the HK property market, they also seem to be more price conscious if the recent SCMP piece on the Great Eagle’s ‘cheap”Onmantin’ development is to be believed. The mainland crackdown on empty flats being used as long-term cash deposits seems to be filtering through.

  4. the real dr adams says:

    @ Chinese Netizen
    Of course, the irony is Japanese travelling overseas at the peak of their bubble economy were quite famous for wandering into someone’s backyard and taking pictures of locals having barbeques or swimming. Some had the attitude that parts of the country were giant living amusement parks.

    It got so bad in the touristy town I was raised that many neighbours hung signs in Japanese explaining that it is private property and not a tourist attraction.

  5. reductio says:

    @Reactor #4

    Indeed I am. Can travel to work on the MTR without being bashed by suitcases full of Face Whitening DNA Essence Purifying Serum. Golden Shower Week can piss off.

  6. Mark Bradley says:

    I am also very happy that the tourists aren’t back. I am not in the tourism industry and my line of work doesn’t rely on them. Reactor #4 is an idiot and and a complete failure career wise. I would be embarrassed if I were him but I guess he has no shame and no friends. No idea why this clown keeps coming back here if he is so triggered by what Hemlock and his merry band of commenters write.

  7. Stanley Lieber says:

    The paucity of mainland tourists is a blessing. Long may it continue.

  8. Reader says:

    May I highlight that @Mary Melville has added a fulsome follow-up to various of yesterday’s comments on development, zoning and land usage issues.

  9. Mjrelje says:

    Just wonderful to hear the mainland tourists’ comments about the fireworks last night. Basically they were shit, short and only smoke was viable. Yet more that won’t be returning. Hurrah!

  10. Reactor #4 says:

    Although Mainlanders are thinner on the ground if you base it on their holiday nesting locations (apparently, quite a few up in Shenzhen – see above), there are places in the city where large numbers flock during the daytime. My preferred viewing spot on HK Island is the promenade that wraps around the Convention Centre. With a little bit of effort, a fair few might talk to you. Give it a go. I have not encountered a single one that bites.

  11. True Patriot says:

    @Sarcophagus #4


    Another reason why we ain’t leaving!


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