July 2006 issue

Travel News
Agency News
Agency Survey
Special Report
Market Report
Course Guide
City Focus

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China on the up

This year's Agency Survey on China reports a more positive business trend over the last 12 months than has been seen in previous years. The outlook for the future also looks good as a growing economy and improved visa policies in certain study destinations take effect.

Key points
The total number of students placed by the 15 agencies in our survey was 1,917

Individual agencies placed between four and 592 students on courses per year

Average business growth was 11 per cent in the last 12 months

The average length of stay for Chinese students was 42 weeks

Overall, 50 per cent of Chinese students stayed in host family accommodation when studying overseas

Six agencies charged their clients a handling fee of between US$1,000 and US$1,250

On average, agencies worked with 32 schools in seven countries last year

Top destinations Most popular courses
1. UK 39%
2. Australia 17%
3. Canada 14%
4. USA 8%
5. Ireland 4.5%
5. New Zealand 4.5%
7. France 3%
7. Korea 3%
9. Japan 2%
10. Germany 1%
1. Academic prep. 36%
2. General 22%
3. Intensive 20%
4. Other 7%
5. Lang + work. 5%
6. Junior progs. 4%
6. Summer vacation 4%
8. Business lang. 2%

Reasons for language travel Top languages
1. Studies overseas 82%
2. Current work 11%
3. Pleasure 3%
4. Studies at home 2%
4. Other 2%
1. English 80%
2. French 5%
3. Italian 4%
3. Japanese 4%
5. Russian 3%
6. German 2%
6. Other 1%

How do agencies recruit students?

How do agencies find new schools to represent?
Word of mouth 31%
Advertising in press 30%
Website 15%
Seminars to students 12%
Other 10%
Mail shots 2%
Internet 34%
Fairs/expos 20%
Workshops 19%
Other 15%

Percentage of agents who recognised each of the following organisations
Acpet 15%
English Australia 31%

Capls 23%
CLC 23%

Souffle 8%
L'Office 80%
Unosel 0%
FLE 8%

MEI~Relsa 38%

Asils 8%
Italian in Italy 0%

Feltom 8%

New Zealand
Appel 0%
Ed. NZ 23%
English NZ 15%

Aeple 0%

South Africa
Eltasa 0%
English SA 8%

Fedele 8%

ABLS 23%
English UK 69%
British Council 100%

Eaquals 0%

Accet 15%
CEA 15%

Ialc 23%
Quality English 15%

Market growth
The flood of Chinese students into many study destinations over the last few years has been slowing down, and this trend has certainly been picked up by our Agency Surveys on the outbound student market in China. Overall business for agents has stagnated for the last two years (see Language Travel Magazine, April 2004 and June 2005). However, the results of our current survey show that many Chinese agencies have seen a growth in their business in the last 12 months, with an overall growth of 11 per cent recorded across our 15 respondents. Only one agency recorded a decrease in business over the past year and put this down to a decrease in the number of properly qualified students able to meet entrance requirements overseas.

Language and destination trends
While English was again the most common language requested by students, Italian made a surprise entry this year into the top three most requested languages, after English and French. Australia and New Zealand both decreased in their popularity as study destinations, chosen by 17 and five per cent of students this year compared with 22 per cent and nine per cent respectively last year. Chinese students are looking to other English language study destinations, with the UK increasing its share from 30 per cent to 39 per cent, while Canada was chosen by 14 per cent of students, compared with just three per cent last year, and the USA attracted nine per cent of our agencies’ clients. The USA has not previously figured as a top study destination in our Chinese Agency Surveys, so its inclusion this year marks a significant development for the USA, which has been actively recruiting the Chinese (see Language Travel Magazine, November 2005, page 6).

Student and course trends
With future academic prospects such an important reason for students to learn a language overseas, it is no surprise that academic or exam preparation courses were the most popular. The huge increase in the average length of stay is, however, more noteworthy as agencies report that Chinese students are now studying overseas for an average of 42 weeks – up from 18.3 weeks. Increased study duration is a trend noted by a number of agencies, although one recorded a particularly long average stay of 114 weeks per student. The overall average, excluding the figure from this agency, was 30 weeks.

Agency business
Chinese students are increasingly relying on word-of-mouth recommendation to find their agent advisers, with 31 per cent of agency business coming via this route, compared with 24 per cent previously. The number of agency clients attracted via the Internet increased by only three percentage points to 15 per cent this year, while press advertising was still one of the most successful ways for Chinese agents to reach new clients.

Looking ahead
Most agents were upbeat about the future with many predicting an increase in business over the coming year. One agency welcomed an increasing objectivity in the visa issuing process in some study destinations.

Economic overview

China’s economy is expected to grow by at least
8% this year, with consumption, investment and foreign trade all contributing to the boom. The first quarter of 2006 saw the country’s economy soar by 10.2%.

The economy is largely being driven by hefty investment, with investment in roads, factory equipment and other fixed assets increasing by 27.7 per cent on the previous year.

The People’s Bank of China raised interest rates
in April, for the first time in 18 months, in order to try and slow the surge in lending and investment and restrict economic growth to more sustainable levels.

Source: China Daily, New York Times

Chinese agents named a range of language programmes they work with, including, in Australia: Curtin University of Technology, Perth, WA; IELI of Flinders University, Adelaide, SA; in Canada: Braemar College, Toronto, ONT; in Cyprus: Cyprus International Institute of Management, Nicosia; in Ireland: Horner School of English, Dublin; in Italy: University for Foreigners, Perugia; in Japan: Clark International College, Kobe; in Korea: Pusan University of Foreign Studies, Pusan; in Malaysia: Taylor’s College, Kuala Lumpur; in New Zealand: AIS St Helens, Auckland; Auckland English Academy, Auckland; in Singapore: Informatics Academy Institute, Sinagpore; Tourism Management Institute of Singapore, Singapore; in the UK: Canterbury Christ Church University, Canterbury; Colchester English Study Centre, Colchester; Huddersfield University, Huddersfield; Leeds English Language School, Leeds; Moreton Hall, Shropshire; Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen; St Giles International, various; University of East Anglia, Norwich; Wimbledon School of English, London; Yale College, Wrexham; Worldwide: Aspect, Embassy CES.

Thank you to the following agencies for taking part in this survey: Beijing Wanji Education Consulting Company, CBEC, Chongqing Rite International Business Consulting Company, CIIC Overseas Consulting Center, Global Friendship Exchange Center, Guangzhou Overseas Chinese Service Center, Overseas Study Service Center of Beihua University, Servlight Consultants, Shanghai Shenyuan International Education Service, Shanxi Daren International Education Company, Sichuan Province Huaxing Going Abroad Service Company, Singapore Han Gao Group, Solton Overseas Development Company, UK Express Course, Yanbian Daxin Overseas Exchange Company.

Contact any advertiser in the this issue now

The following language schools, associations and accommodation providers advertised in the latest edition of Language Travel Magazine. If you would like more information on any of these advertisers, tick the relevant boxes, fill out your details and send.




Asociación Gallega
       de Escuelas de
       Español - AGAES
Education New
       Zealand Trust
English Australia
English UK
Quality English
Turlingua -
       Consortium of
       Travel and Tourism

       Star Awards

Malta Tourism
Language Travel

English Australia
Sydney West
       International College

Central de
       - Come 2 Brazil
IDIOMA Escola de
STB - Student Travel
       Bureau - Inbound

Access International

Mandarin House

Anglolang Academy
       of English
Aspect (Australia,
       Canada, England,
       France, Germany,
       Ireland, Malta,
       New Zealand,
       Scotland, South
       Africa, Spain, USA)
Beet Language
Bell International
       (Malta, UK)
Bristol Language
Cambridge Academy
       of English
Churchill House
Cicero Languages
Eastbourne School
       of English
Eckersley School of
English Language
       Centre Brighton &
English UK
Excel English
       Language School

Frances King
       School of English
King Street College
Lake School of
LAL Language and
       (England, Malta,
       South Africa, USA)
Languages Out
       There (England,
       Germany, Ireland,
       Italy, Spain)
London School of
Malvern House
       Language School
Oxford Brookes
Quality English
Queen Ethelburga's
St Giles Colleges
       (UK, USA)
Study Group
       (Australia, Canada,
       England, France,
       Germany, Ireland,
       Italy, New Zealand,
       South Africa,
       Spain, USA)
University of
       Sheffield (England)
West London
       Business College
Wimbledon School
       of English

Prolog- International
       House Berlin

Cork Language
       Centre International
Linguaviva Centre

International English
       Language Centre
Malta Tourism

Home Language
       Australia, Austria,
       Brazil, Canada,
       Chile, China,
       England, France,
       Germany, Holland,
       Italy, Japan, Malta,
       New Zealand,
       Portugal, Russia,
       Spain, USA)

Auckland English
Education New
       Zealand Trust
Rotorua English
       Language Academy

York School

Language Link,
Liden & Denz
       Language Centre

Cape Studies -
       Pacific Gateway
       Study Group
Interlink School of
International House
       - Durban
Jeffrey's Bay
       Language Centre
South African
       School of English

Asociación Gallega
       de Escuelas de
       Español - AGAES
Kingsbrook -
       Spanish for
Pamplona Learningn
       Spanish Institute
Turlingua -
       Consortium of
       Language Travel
       and Tourism

EF Language
       Colleges Ltd
       (Australia, Canada,
       China, Ecuador,
       England, France,
       Germany, Ireland,
       Italy, Malta, New
       Zealand, Russia,
       Scotland, Spain,

American Language
California State
California State
       San Marcos
Kaplan Educational
       Centers (Canada,
       England, USA)
University of
       California Santa
University of
University of
       Nebraska at Omaha
Zoni Language


St Paul's
       International School

Richmond School
       District #38

Oxford Brookes

University of

Xincon Technology