The luxurious spending habits of overseas chinese students I grew up in beijing, china, where i witnessed how political, social and economic trends what i call"Tides of the age"Impacted ordinary people's lives.Before joining forbes asia in new york as a reporter and online producer, i interned here for two summers covering chinese business news, and was a news assistant at the new york times beijing bureau for a summer. Like many of her chinese friends studying abroad, elizabeth is a fan of luxury products.While a college student at purdue university, in, she left her credit cards with the salespersons of cartier, gucci gucci, and prada prada among others in new york and los angeles, so that they could send her photos of the new arrivals and at her nods, make the purchases on her behalf.She estimates that her living expenses in college, rent excluded, averaged $100, 000 a year. "Some call me 'second generation rich, ' but i don't think i am, compared with those real ones,"She says, citing examples of a chinese friend who once bought an entire chanel chanel seasonal collection, and another who burned $6, 000 one night on clubbing in new york.Over 60% of the chinese students receive funding solely from their families michael kors online outlet and pay full tuition. While abroad, many of the students act as fashion advisors and personal shoppers for those back home.Judy, daughter of a shanghai government official, recalls having to bring two full suitcases of goods for her friends, relatives, and parents' colleagues every time she went back to china during her college years. "I hated it so much, but i was shopping for everyone and all kinds of random stuff. "Says judy, adding that she had to bring seven coach handbags for her cousin alone. A 2012 survey by china luxury advisors of chinese students in new york and boston shows that 74% were asked for their advice on luxury purchases at least once a quarter.More than 30% bought luxury goods to take home quarterly, and accompanied friends and family while shopping overseas. Some retailers have already begun to appreciate this special group of customers.In milwaukee, wisconsin, where an educational institute was battling to convert a hilton hotel into a dorm for chinese students, jewelry retailer swarovski was among the local businesses that welcomed the students' presence, because they"Have some disposable income and enjoy spending it. " Last year, bergdorf goodman, an upscale department store in new york, sponsored the chinese new year celebrations at columbia and new york university.Later in the year, the store held for the chinese students from the two schools a seminar, where an executive from the parent company neiman marcus spoke about fashion trends, career opportunities and the store's exclusive products.The seminar was conveniently set at bergdorf's shoe salon before the store opened in the morning so that the students could do some shopping afterwards. Bergdorf goodman's window display of red horses and"Happy new year"In chinese on january 19, 2014, two weeks before china's spring festival to celebrate the"Year of the horse. " Similarly, the beverly center in los angeles, home to a number of designer brands, sponsored chinese new year galas at the university of california, los angeles and the university of southern california the latter alone has close to 4, 000 chinese students. Yet overall, targeting chinese students as a standalone group of customers is still a novelty.The snowballing of purchases made by chinese overseas is after all a recent phenomenon.While in 2012, more than 60% of chinese luxury shoppers made at least some of their purchases abroad, in cheap michael kors 2010 that share was only 36%, according to mckinsey co. "[Luxury brands] know that the opportunity is there, it's just that they haven't wrapped their brains around it yet,"Says avery booker, a partner at china luxury advisors, which found in the 2012 survey that only 25% of the students had been contacted by luxury brands during their stay overseas. The fact that the michael kors australia outlet students are geographically scattered also mounts to a hurdle.Michele norsa, ceo of salvatore ferragamo, says the company's major challenge in capturing the global chinese shoppers is to figure out where they are and will be in the next few years.

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