Tokyo Tops Chinese Travel Searches in 2016

In an industry exclusive Air4casts and Skyscanner, the global travel search engine with over 50 million unique visitors per month, reveal the extent of the Chinese visitor surge to Japan.

Live, online travel searches by individual consumers using the Skyscanner search engine underscore the huge popularity of Japan as a destination for the Chinese. Skyscanner’s first quarter 2016 data show that Tokyo is by far and away the top searched for destination out of mainland China this year.

The Chinese Skyscanner Search Rankings

Beijing to Tokyo led the first quarter Chinese Skyscanner search league with Shanghai to Tokyo in second place.


Tokyo accounted for half of the top five Chinese searches in the first three months of this year.

“It is the independent, sophisticated Chinese traveller who uses the internet to search for flights and this is exactly the sort of traveller who is seeking flights to Tokyo. The underlying trend is that Chinese still very much want to travel to Japan and that their travel patterns and aspirations are changing. The shift towards independent travel is increasing rapidly, particularly at the younger end of the Millennial generation”, says Jane Robinson of Air4casts.

Haneda Reaps the Chinese Benefit

At the airport and terminal level Air4casts’ nationality tracker highlights the differing monthly Chinese passenger profiles of Haneda and Narita.

Whilst Narita is the larger of the two Tokyo airports for Chinese travellers, it is Haneda which has seen the fastest growth.

With direct flights from Beijing, Haneda has become the obvious airport of choice for large numbers of Beijing residents.

Air4casts’ latest projections show that Haneda’s international terminal could easily expect to handle nearly 77 thousand departing Chinese nationals next month, a 40% increase on May 2015.

The Peak Haneda Chinese Shopper Times

Targeting costly in store activations and promotions to capture the optimum number of high spending shoppers has never been more important.

In May the hours between 08.00 and 10.00 will be by far the busiest for Chinese nationals departing on international flights out of Haneda’s international Terminal.

the author

Jane is the Air4casts CEO. She is an industry expert on data sources in particular. If there's something to know in Travel Retail, she knows it.

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