Byravee Iyer
Sep 12, 2013

What the affluent Asian woman splurges on

ASIA-PACIFIC – Affluent women in Asia, defined as the top 40 per cent of income earners, are more likely to buy holidays than affluent men, according to a recent research report by Agility Research & Strategy.

Affluent Asian women splurge of travel, technology
Affluent Asian women splurge of travel, technology

The research revealed that women plan to spend between US$5000 and US$20,000 on trips abroad over the next 12 months. Travel is seen as a high spend item, second only to the purchase of a car. In all, 96 per cent of women surveyed said they intend to purchase travel over the next year.

These women view trips abroad as personal gifts or rewards to celebrate special occasions. Asian women are also more likely to go on holidays with their family or spouse rather than with friends or on business. Only 20 per cent of Asian women are planning to travel with their friends.

The research surveyed 560 women aged 18 to 35 year from China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore.

Top global fashion cities including Paris, London, Tokyo and New York dominated the list of top travel destinations. The top four rated destinations are seen as some of the most expensive places to stay in the world, and all require long-haul flights. The respondents also prefer the large luxury hotel chains, with Shangri-La, Marriot, Sheraton, Four Seasons and Ritz-Carlton making the top five rated brands.

“Asia’s affluent are young and growing,” said Amrita Banta, MD of Agility Research & Strategy. “About 50 per cent of them are women who have great propensity to purchase, and as the gap between women’s and men’s income decreases; women are reaping the financial and social gains of a more equitable environment.”

Banta added that young affluent women are active in the workplace; they have a greater proportion of disposable income and have the financial power to buy luxury and premium brands. “With such financial power behind them, the affluent Asian female has certainly become the quintessential example of the next big consumer segment for brands to focus on.”

Perhaps surprising to some, the research also revealed that affluent women are likely to pick technology over fashion. According to the study, the affluent Asian woman is more likely to go for an iPhone versus a Prada Bag, with 95 per cent saying they will purchase technology while 86 per cent preferred fashion accessories.

Affluent Asian females demand great quality from luxury brands, but they also expect exclusivity and uniqueness. European luxury brands dominate across the fashion, watch and car manufacturing sectors. Consumers want to have products that are made in Europe, which bear the mark ‘Made in France’ or ‘Made in Italy’, as this denotes a real level of exclusivity and luxury. Consumers said they are willing to pay a premium for the heritage of the brand and for the perceived quality and craftsmanship of the product. 

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