The importance of Chinese travel market for Croatia viewed by South Eastern top Chinese travel expert and Intercon Dubrovnik’s Operations Manager Mr. Kristian Vrbanic
Mr Kristian Vrbanic strongly believes that the future of Dubrovnik tourism lies in the Asian-Pacific market. He stressed out that Chinese, Indian, South Korean markets have to be understood before they are approached. In his view Dubrovnik has proven to be an airline destination. However there are no direct flights from China to Dubrovnik and this poses a huge problem. Mr Vrbanic, Intercon Dubrovnik’s operations manager strongly believes that the Croatian government should offer Chinese travel operators free flight subventions, especially as Chinese tourists are continental tourists. When asked to elaborate on this concept of a Chinese continental tourist, Kristian explained to us that Chinese tourists are starting to travel in November and their peak travel season finishes with the celebration of Chinese New Year at the end of January. In Mr Vrbanic opinion this should extend our tourist season whose success has been based largely on the arrival of tourists from Great Britain and Scandinavian markets.Moreover, Chinese people love Dubrovnik and for them not to visit Dubrovnik when they are in Europe is an opportunity too good to miss. Chinese tourists are great lovers of the world of luxury, fine food and most importantly fine wine. It is here also where Dubrovnik and the whole of Croatia can capitalize on as our gastro-enology offer is second to none. You can imagine the amount of wine we can export to Chinese as for them wine drinking is a phenomenon developed in the recent years.
Coming back to the story of Dubrovnik,VIP Chinese clients love villa accommodation, good view and again they are not bathers and sun seekers. Kristian also explained to us that it was incredible how a South Korean TV soap filmed in Dubrovnik and Split enchanted South Koreans with this part of the world so they started coming in droves and fell in love with the place. Kristian confessed that this marketing ploy worked well for Dubrovnik and the government should double the subsidies offered to filming and tv production companies although this was something which was already implemented well Kristian concludes at the end.