ForwardKeys predicts healthy bookings

SINGAPORE, 11 May 2018: Travel retailers in the Asia-Pacific region can look forward to healthy business opportunities in the months ahead according to the latest figures from ForwardKeys.

ForwardKeys revealed its findings at the Duty Free and Travel Retail Asia-Pacific Summit in Singapore, last week, based on the analysis of 17 million booking transactions.

For the important Chinese outbound market, the fastest growing destinations over the next three months are currently Japan (flight bookings are 88.8% ahead of where they were at the equivalent time last year) and the United Arab Emirates (currently 48.6% ahead). Indonesia and Hong Kong are also favourites.

During the Chinese Dragon Boat Festival, centred around 18 June, Chinese international departures are ahead 21.3% compared to last year, with Japan and UAE again proving to be the destinations with the largest booking increases.

For return-home flights (11 to 24 June), Hong Kong, Osaka, Phuket and both Tokyo airports all show growth.

The Chinese are also returning to South Korea, not in organised groups – restrictions are still in place – but as independent travellers.

Bookings for independent travellers for the next three months are ahead by 90.1%. Travellers from Vietnam and the Philippines are also heading to South Korea in significantly greater numbers.

Amongst the major Asian airports, Changi is showing the most impressive growth in international travellers, currently ahead 16.8% on departures for the next three months.

Changi airport is experiencing a particularly strong growth in use from Australians and Indians as both transit passengers and visitors to Singapore.

ForwardKeys’ analysis is able to identify which nationalities are in the airport at particular times of the day and this can be particularly useful to retailers.

ForwardKeys’ director of business development APAC Jameson Wong said: “If you are particularly keen to target Chinese buyers in Changi, they are in their highest concentrations during the peak periods from 0700 to 0900 and again during the afternoon from 1500 to 1800.