China A 3rd. World Country?

As a China Tour Operator, many people come to me with the idea that China is a poor 3rd world country and their expectations of touring there should be very inexpensive. Most people are shocked when they arrive in Shanghai or Beijing and find that that China is much more up to date than they had perceived. Above you see just one example of modern name brand stores which are available in China. Chinese people have money and they like luxury spending. 1.6 million households have an income in excess of $80,000 U.S. dollars a year which is expected to grow to 4.4 million households by 2015. In 2009, Chinese people purchased $9.4 Billion dollars in luxury goods and is expected to hit U.S. $14.6 Billion topping all other countries in the world with their 1.3 billion people. China has now surpassed the U.S. in luxury purchases and is only second to Japan as the largest consumer of high-end goods. Peking University is now offering a class on Fashion Luxuries Management and that class alone the tuition is U.S. $15,600 per student for the program. Young career working women often spend up to 25% of their income on brand name cosmetics alone in Shanghai as another example of their ever changing economy and culture. This past fall 2014 I saw over 1000 people standing in line at the Nike store in Shanghai just to order the new Air Jordan 6 basketball shoes at $150. a pair.  Still yet there are bargains to be had as China is a classic Old and New culture growing together side by side. Bargain stores still exist where you can buy either Knock-offs or over runs of brand name clothing and other goods.  For questions, email me at  interlak@eskimo.com