The number of Chinese group tours to the city fell 90 per cent from a year earlier in the first ten days of September, according to data compiled by the Travel Industry Council of Hong Kong, accelerating sharply from a 63 per cent plunge in August.
Overall, tourism to the city declined almost 40 per cent in August from a year earlier, said Financial Secretary Paul Chan in a blog post Sunday. That’s the steepest drop since the 2003 SARS epidemic.
Hong Kong’s hotel industry is struggling with a collapse in bookings after protesters disrupted flights from the territory’s airport last month. Retail sales by value dropped 11.4 per cent in July — the first full month affected by the protests. Hong Kong’s economy overall contracted 0.4 per cent in the second quarter from the previous period.