The Impact of Visa Liberalization on Tourist Behaviors—The Case of China Outbound Market Visiting Hong Kong

Anyu Liu, Robert Douglas McKercher

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)


The potential offered by the China outbound tourism market will create pressure on destinations to relax their visa requirements in order to capitalize on the opportunities it presents. Prior research into the impacts of visa liberalization indicates that the volume of arrivals increases substantially. However, little research has been conducted examining changes in profile of visitors and their resultant behaviors. This study examines changes in the Chinese pleasure visitor market to Hong Kong from 1998 to 2012. The study is grounded in market access theory. In addition to the significant increase of arrivals during that time, behavior patterns have changed almost completely, as independent tourists have been freed from the constraints imposed by tour group participation. The study has valuable implications for other destinations that are likely to relax visa requirements for markets like China.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)603-611
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Travel Research
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014


  • China
  • Hong Kong
  • Market Access
  • Tourism
  • Visa Liberalization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Transportation
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management

Cite this