CHINA. China has become a major market for luxury luggage over the past decade, with domestic demand increasing from US$12.1 billion in 2006 to an estimated US$62.5 billion in 2017, according to IBIS World.

Besides being the world’s largest manufacturer of luggage, China is also one of the world’s largest luggage consumers, according to Jing Daily.

Researchers predict that by 2020, Chinese travellers will make 6.8 billion trips inside China and 200 million trips internationally. China’s rapidly growing tourism industry is set to further strengthen the demand for luxury luggage, creating opportunities for both domestic and foreign brands.

Currently, Millennial travellers account for 40% of China’s outbound tourists. Jing Daily says that with Chinese Millennials’ emphasis on individualism and lifestyle, luggage is no longer just a practical necessity. In the past few years, luggage collaborations between luxury and streetwear brands have boomed, with luggage today becoming an extension of a traveller’s personality and individual style.

Moodie Davitt content partner Jing Daily lists its top five luxury luggage collaborations that appeal to the Chinese market.

1. Fendi x Rimowa

In recent months, Fendi has been a buzzword in China due to reality show star Jackson Wang (王嘉尔)’s iconic song “Fendiman” topping Chinese charts.

The first collaboration between Fendi and luggage brand Rimowa took place in November 2017 to celebrate Rimowa’s 80th anniversary. As Win Shang News reported, China has become one of Rimowa’s fastest-growing markets in recent years. In 1937, Rimowa was the first company to release an aluminium suitcase.

Fendi x Rimowa luggage

The second Fendi x Rimowa collaboration was announced on 14 June this year. Chinese consumers were targeted via Fendi’s official WeChat account. Supreme fan account Supreme 007 presented a survey for Chinese consumers, asking for opinions on the new Fendi x Rimowa collaboration. 58% of the respondents showed a desire to purchase, noted Jing Daily.

According to Fendi’s website, the latest luggage will cost US$2,690.

2. Louis Vuitton x Supreme

In June 2017, Supreme’s streetwear appeal was widened by a historical – yet controversial – collaboration with French luxury fashion house Louis Vuitton. Last July, Louis Vuitton opened a pop-up store in Beijing’s trendy 798 Art District, which attracted scores of young Chinese consumers. Within the collection, the Louis Vuitton x Supreme trunk was listed as the most expensive item at US$68,500.

Supreme x Louis Vuitton luggage

According to Business of Fashion, Chinese Millennials were among the most positive respondents to news of the collaboration.

3. Off-White x Rimowa

June 2018 saw German luggage brand Rimowa announce its latest collaboration, this time with urban brand Off-White. The controversial luggage boasts a transparent design, setting keyboards a flutter on the Chinese Internet.

On Weibo, users argue the selling point is the design, not the function. Some likened the design to that of the transparent backpacks of elementary school students.

Off-White x Rimowa luggage

Off-White launched its first flagship store in Shanghai in May 2017 to cater to a growing demand from Chinese Millennials.

By teaming up with streetwear brand Off-White, Rimowa aims to attract young travellers. The price for the see-through suitcase was originally set at €850 (US$994), but is now listed for US$1,200 on Rimowa’s website.

4. Supreme x Rimowa

Streetwear label Supreme collaborated with Rimowa in April 2018. Although the collection has not been released in China, Chinese Supreme fans have scrambled to purchase the luggage online, according to Jing Daily.

Supreme x Rimowa luggage

The price of the luggage ranges from US$1,600 to US$1,800.

5. Tumi x Kith

Business luggage brand Tumi has gained popularity in China over the past two years. Chinese actor and model Ethan Juan (阮经天) was appointed as Tumi’s image spokesperson for the brand’s 2018 Alpha Bravo Spring/ Summer series, which reportedly received positive reactions from Chinese netizens on Weibo.

Kith x Tumi luggage

The Tumi x Kith collaboration, launched in March 2018, combined both business and street styles. Prices range from US$1,295 to US$1,599.

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*This article was originally published by the much-respected JING DAILY, a Moodie Davitt Report content partner.