Travelers flee smog in quest for clear skies
The online travel agency Ctrip said that it expected to help send more than 150,000 travelers to overseas destinations in December to escape severe smog that has hit vast regions in northern, central and eastern China, including Beijing.
UTour International Travel Service Co didn’t give specific figures, but it said the number of travelers in December has increased by 10 to 15 percent compared with the same period last year, and smog is the major reason.
As the smog lingered, 24 cities, including Beijing, Tianjin and Shijiazhuang, issued red alerts, the highest response level, as of Sunday, and more than 50 issued orange alerts, the second-highest level.
Wang Zhenyue, deputy director of UTour International Travel Service’s direct-marketing center, said smog has been an issue for a long time. “However, people can arrange trips in advance now, because governments usually issue red alerts for air pollution one or two days in advance.”