A new group of Chinese travellers is emerging, namely, free independent travellers (FITs), who are characterised as young millennials, tech-savvy, independent and affluent. FITs tend to spend money on luxury goods and authentic experiences, prefer Southeast Asia for short haul destinations and plan their own itineraries. The percentage of FITs going abroad is increasing rapidly every year and there are no signs of stopping. So it's no surprise that China is leading the world in online travel. But for Southeast Asian markets, how can local online travel businesses accelerate the development of the online travel ecosystem in its own domestic market? How can retailers and hospitality players win the hearts and wallets of Chinese FITs in the region?