Chinese tourists drive Lunar New Year sales at department stores

Chinese New Year sales
// Alipay data reveals Chinese consumers’ mobile payments behaviour during Lunar New Year
// Department stores experienced the highest sales growth
// Transaction values and volumes both experienced robust growth

Chinese consumers’ mobile payment behaviour in the UK during the week of the Lunar New Year holiday led to robust growth across department stores and luxury retailers, according to an Alibaba-affiliated digital payment platform.

Alipay said the data it had compiled indicated that transaction volumes at department stores surged 2.8 times year-on-year between February 4-10, while average spend per person across 800 Holland & Barrett stores increased 48 per cent.

Chinese supermarkets and luxury retailers across the UK also experienced robust growth in sales during the annual cultural celebration.

Alipay said their data provided an alternative insight into the spending habits of Chinese tourists in the UK, where department stores and restaurants are increasingly embracing their payment platform in a bid to ride on China’s outbound tourism boom.

For the rest of Europe during the same week, Alipay said both transaction values and volumes experienced robust growth, while offline in-store transaction value surged 2.2 times year-on-year.

It added that Europe dominated the top 10 countries in terms of average spend.

The statistics reinforce the findings from the 2018 Trends for Mobile Payment in Chinese Outbound Tourism report jointly released by Nielsen and Alipay last month.

It found that Chinese tourists paid for 32 per cent of transactions using mobile payment, overtaking cash for the first time, and that nearly 60 per cent of merchants surveyed experienced growth in both foot traffic and sales after adopting Alipay.

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