Outbound visits by Chinese residents hit a record high of over 130 million in 2017, up 7 percent compared to 2016, making China the world's biggest travel guest source country, according to a report released by the China Tourism Academy and the online travel service Ctrip on Thursday.
Outbound travelers spent nearly $116 billion last year, a year-on-year increase of 5 percent.
China is regarded the largest traveler source for 10 countries including Thailand, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, Russia, Maldives, Indonesia, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and South Africa.
Countries in Southeast Asia — Singapore and Malaysia, for example — remain popular among Chinese visitors in 2017, while Morocco, Tunisia, Turkey, Germany and Britain have tremendous potential to attract Chinese travelers, the report said.
Tunisia, for example, received 18,000 Chinese visitors in 2017, more than 150 percent higher than the previous year, thanks to the visa waiver policy for Chinese residents.
Safety remains the priority for Chinese visitors, who consider safety of travel destinations the most important element when choosing tour packages, according to the report.
The report asserted Japan, Singapore, New Zealand, Iceland, Australia, Switzerland, Austria, Sweden, and the United Arab Emirates are all regarded as safe foreign destinations by Chinese travelers.