China’s high-speed rail operator has reported a 140% rise in bookings for lines that terminate in Hangzhou over the past holiday, underlying a trend of consumers shifting to domestic rail travel.
The eight-day Chinese holiday led to an unprecedented boom in tourism, which not only boosted the economies of China and other countries and regions but also brought changes to global tourism.
Chinese airlines have carried a total of 12.95 million passengers during the National Day holiday, an increase of 14.6% from the same period last year. The average passenger load factor was over 80%.
Income from tourism reached 549.4 billion yuan (HK$644.57 billion) for the first seven days of the National Day Golden Week holiday, with a total of 663 million domestic tourists.
A total of 705 million tourists traveled around China during the national holiday, generating RMB 583.6 billion (about USD 87.7 billion) of revenue, the China National Tourism Administration said.
People used to save money for years to travel either within the country or outside for year-end holidays. Of late, people have started using credit cards, but end up paying huge interest rates.
For Chinese travelers - who spent USD 261 billion overseas last year - the hottest destinations aren’t Paris, New York or Tokyo but the beaches of Sanya or the peaks of far-western Yunnan.
The number of Chinese cross-border tourists during the National Day break is expected to remain flat for the first time in years, due to a set of travel restrictions.
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