China's three-day Labor Day holiday season begins this Thursday,.. and shopping malls in Korea are vamping up their marketing strategies to entice more Chinese tourists in.
Malls are preparing various events including generous giveaways and big discounts for such products as locally-designed clothes and cosmetics popular with Chinese consumers.
One of Korea's biggest retailers, Lotte Mall, will open a Korean Wave pop-up store especially for the holiday,.. that will sell products related to popular Korean dramas.
These efforts should come as no surprise as Chinese tourists have surpassed Japanese tourists both in terms of their numbers and the amount they spend in Korea.
Japanese tourists traditionally top the list when it comes to foreigners visiting Korea but the number contracted recently due to the weak yen and strong Korean won, while Chinese tourists have been coming here in droves.
More than one million Chinese tourists came to Korea in the first three months of the year, up nearly 45-percent from the same period last year.
Korea's top department store chain, Shinsegae, saw its sales to Chinese consumers spike a whopping one-hundred-and-seven percent in the first quarter of this year, while the country's biggest duty free shop, Lotte Duty Free , recorded an all-time high of over 850-million U.S. dollars in its sales to Chinese visitors .
That's up 15-percent from a year earlier.
Yoo Li-an, Arirang News.