Travel volume spikes during holidays
An increasing number of Chinese are choosing to travel abroad during public holidays as consumption levels and incomes rise in the country
More than 260,000 people entered and exited the country via Shanghai Pudong International Airpor t between Dec 31, 2016 and Jan 2, 2017, representing a yearly growth of about 11 percent, according to the latest statistics from the China Immigration Inspection of Shanghai Airport.
During the three-day holiday period, 75,000 Chinese mainland citizens boarded international flights at Shanghai Pudong International Airport, accounting for about 60 percent of the total outbound tourists from the city. In addition, more than half of them were traveling to destinations such as Japan, South Korea, Southeast Asia and the United States.
“I’ve gone on overseas trips with my family during most of the holidays as I think it is a good chance for everyone to get together and take a break while admiring another country’s scenery and savoring their cuisine,” said Zhou Yunqin, a marketing director of a multinational company in Shanghai, who flew to Thailand with her family during the New Year’s Day holiday.
According to official statistics, the number of people departing and entering the country shortly before and after a holiday period has been growing in the past few years.
In addition, the number of days in 2015 where more than 100,000 tourists entered and exited the country via Shanghai Pudong International Airport was 26. In 2016, the figure grew more than five times to 144.
Yu Hai, a sociology professor at Fudan University, explained that traveling abroad has become an increasingly popular option among Chinese as consumption levels continue to rise in tandem with growing incomes in the country.
A recent report by Ctrip on travel trends during the New Year and Spring Festival further illustrated this point.
Based on the report findings, the average that tourists from 186 Chinese cities spent booking trips via Ctrip during the latest New Year’s Day holiday was over 4,000 yuan ($575.5), a considerable surge from the previous year.
The data from 250 million Ctrip users also showed that 58 percent of customers chose to travel abroad during the New Year’s Day holiday period and that European countries like Germany, Italy and France have once again become popular destinations, registering more than 100 percent yearly growth.
“More and more customers are also beginning to demand for more unique travel experiences to niche destinations such as Iceland, Venezuela, Monaco and Finland,” said an official from Ctrip.