McKinsey Survey: The Return of the Greater Bay Area Traveler to Hong Kong

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With COVID-19 recreation restrictions now lifted, Greater Bay Area (GBA) visitors are fresh to return to Hong Kong and commencement shopping again, according to a caller survey by world guidance consulting patient McKinsey & Company entitled, “The Return of nan Greater Bay Area Traveler to Hong Kong.”

In February 2023, McKinsey surveyed 1,155 Mainland travelers from nan Greater Bay Area who expressed liking successful visiting Hong Kong 12 months aft nan re-opening of nan separator successful January. In addition to retail, nan study besides asked travelers astir financial services and healthcare services.

While nan study results should springiness companies successful Hong Kong logic to beryllium optimistic astir nan return of GBA tourists, McKinsey cautions that Hong Kong could suffer its sought-after domiciled arsenic a shopping, financial services, and healthcare hub arsenic neighboring cities drawback up quickly. Hong Kong firms will need to amended work quality, present amended integer experiences, and amended link pinch nan remainder of the Greater Bay Area, successful bid to proceed wooing shoppers, says McKinsey.

Key findings from nan study include:


  • GBA travelers’ liking successful shopping and sightseeing remains strong: one-third of surveyed participants scheme to sojourn Hong Kong successful nan adjacent 12 months, pinch 85 percent of respondents citing shopping and sightseeing arsenic nan main intent for their adjacent trip
  • Average spending is expected to scope 36,400 RMB per GBA traveler, pinch nan mostly of spending connected luxury goods, astatine astir 17,800 RMB per traveler
  • However, astir 10-15 percent of consumers will walk little successful Hong Kong successful nan adjacent 3 years. They will alternatively take Hainan aliases Macau for luxury shopping, and “daigou” for cosmetics, health supplements, and babe formula.
  • Access to nan latest trends (61 percent), amended merchandise information (60 percent), and higher quality products (59 percent) are nan apical 3 advantages of shopping successful Hong Kong among GBA respondents.
  • Hong Kong’s main advantages are anchored astir products, specified arsenic entree to nan latest trends, amended merchandise safety, and higher value products. Service value and integer acquisition are falling behind.
  • Having a pan-GBA beingness is adjuvant – 45 percent of consumers are much apt to bargain from a Hong Kong marque that has GBA branches.

Healthcare services 

  • Body checks (52 percent) and vaccination (31 percent) are nan apical 2 healthcare services GBA travelers said they scheme to acquisition during their adjacent sojourn to Hong Kong. Consumers are also willing successful specialized aesculapian services, specified arsenic dental (19 percent), Obstetrics and gynecology (18 percent), and ophthalmology (14 percent)
  • Access to treatments not disposable successful Mainland China was cited arsenic nan apical logic for GBA travelers (78 percent) to recreation to Hong Kong for aesculapian services.
  • 23 percent of GBA women scheme to acquisition aesculapian artistic services successful Hong Kong. Non-plastic room injections was cited arsenic nan biggest curen type GBA travelers intend to purchase (79 percent).

Financial services

  • Opinions are much divergent connected Hong Kong’s domiciled arsenic a financial center. Social stableness and estimation of financial services spot clear improvement. Regulatory system, customer privacy, and safe finance / business environment are much mixed.
  • 78 percent of respondents said they put successful Hong Kong to gain higher returns than connected the Mainland; 78 percent opportunity they are looking for much unchangeable returns than connected nan Mainland.
  • 61 percent of respondents said an charismatic liking complaint connected savings accounts, and 51 percent cited debased guidance and transaction fees were nan apical reasons for selecting a financial institution successful Hong Kong.
  • Only 16 percent cited nan value of financial advisors, and only 6 percent cited a bully online experience, arsenic nan apical reasons.

“While Hong Kong continues to bask respective advantages arsenic a shopping destination for Greater Bay Area travelers, Hong Kong has fallen down successful a fewer captious areas specified arsenic integer acquisition and work quality,” says Arthur Shek, managing partner of McKinsey’s Hong Kong office.

“Mainland travelers are progressively accustomed to a seamless omnichannel shopping experience. Hong Kong retailers that hope to proceed to pull business from Mainland shoppers should rethink nan measurement they prosecute with them done integer channels and amended work quality.”

“Retailers should deliberation holistically astir Hong Kong and GBA,” suggests Enoch Chan, a partner successful Hong Kong. “This holistic attack extends to nan measurement retailers are organized and negociate their business. Rather than mounting up wholly abstracted business units that don’t pass pinch each other, Hong Kong companies request to found an integrated statement that is geared toward knowing and serving GBA customers.”

“Hong Kong healthcare providers are preferred by GBA consumers for aesculapian treatments that are not yet accessible successful mainland China. But pinch nan relaxation of regulations and nan opening of nan mainland market, Hong Kong healthcare providers request to rethink their worth proposition to seizure maturation successful request for healthcare services from GBA consumers,” says Beijing-based partner Jason Peng.

Associate partner Jady Ye believes that “Hong Kong firms request to summation a better understanding of Mainland China tourists’ needs. Perceptions of Hong Kong person changed successful nan past few years, and tin beryllium shaped done proactive trading and branding efforts. Now is nan clip to step up finance connected these fronts.”