If there’s one truth about marketing to Asia’s increasingly brand savvy consumers, it’s that one size doesn’t fit all.

For instance, shopping forms a crucial part of travel plans for 82% of Chinese travellers when they go abroad – but they splurge and scrimp in the same trip.

The findings are the result of a 10-country study by the Institute on Asian Consumer Insight (ACI) initiated to better understand the Asian consumer. The flagship Pan Asian Wave II study had 26,800 respondents aged 18-55 with moderate and high disposable income from China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

“They spend a lot but in this context too, contradictions abound: they may purchase a high priced luxury item from Harrods during the day, but stay at a two-star hotel at night,” said Gemma Calvert, ACI’s director for research and development at the recent Neuromarketing World Forum in Singapore.