Chinese parents are willing to spend a fortune on English tutoring for their kids, regardless of their financial situation.
In big cities like Beijing and Shanghai, parents are turning to online tutors instead of sending their children to a language school, said a recent report.
The report by the Chinese Academy of Sciences big data mining and knowledge management laboratory is based on a year of study, following more than 200,000 young learners and their parents, and over 30,000 North American tutors on China's three biggest online English tutoring platforms.
VIPKID, 51talk and vipJr jointly make up 80% of the market in China and the average age of online learners is six, according to the report.
Of the surveyed parents, 73 percent said they spend at least 10,000 yuan (1,580 U.S. dollars) on online English classes each year and they prefer to hire tutors from North America, believing them to have good pronunciation and lively teaching styles. Many parents hope their children will attend university in the United States or Canada.
Many parents complained about the time cost of delivering their children to classes and the unbalanced competence of foreign tutors in traditional classes.
"The survey shows it can take parents up to two and a half hours to take their children to class and wait. Online tutoring saves them a lot of time," said the report.
Another major reason that children are opting for online classes is to enjoy one-on-one tutoring independently.
Of the young learners, 83 percent take private classes without parental supervision. Parents can monitor and replay classes on their computer or phone at any time.