Non-gaming, online marketing more important: Survey

Gambling is still the main reason for Chinese visitation to Macau, with most planning to spend even more, or at least the same amount on their next visit, according to a proprietary survey conducted by Bernstein Research.

The survey involved nearly 1,900 Macau customers as well as those planning to visit, with questions based on consumer preferences and behaviors. The survey was aimed at building a profile of the low-end grind, mid-tier and higher end base mass, as well as premium mass customers.

While the majority of Chinese visitors surveyed said gambling was their main reason for visiting, non-gaming has also become an important draw factor for visitors, according to the survey.

“Most visitors view gaming as an extension of the holiday experience, but not necessarily the only reason for visiting Macau. Shopping and dining are important aspects, with time spent on both surpassing hours spent gaming. Visitors plan to spend a larger amount on subsequent trips,” said the brokerage.

The majority of respondents also travelled with either family or friends, with 50 percent reportedly travelling with a spouse or family, and 30 percent with a group of friends.

In relation to travel and stay, the survey also notes that the majority of visitors prefer to stay overnight, but length of stay is increasing. The IVS Visa is the preferred entry method to the city.

Regarding marketing, the survey has shown social media and internet marketing have become more popular, with nearly half of respondents having seen some form of online marketing of Macau or casinos.

Loyalty programs also saw an uptick, with 49 percent of respondents reportedly having joined at least one loyalty program on their last visit.