Mi­grant work­ers can book trains early

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - NATION - By ZHAO LEI zhaolei@chi­nadaily.com.cn

Mi­grant work­ers in China will have ear­lier ac­cess to train tick­ets dur­ing the up­com­ing chun­yun, an an­nual travel rush around Spring Fes­ti­val, ac­cord­ing to the na­tional rail­way oper­a­tor.

Em­ploy­ers of mi­grant work­ers can be­gin book­ing train tick­ets on Sun­day, 40 days be­fore the start of chun­yun on Jan 16 — it ends on Feb 24 — China Rail­way Cor­po­ra­tion said on Satur­day.

Mi­grant work­ers can also form a group in us­ing the ad­vance book­ing ser­vice, it said, adding that such groups must have at least five mem­bers.

Tra­di­tion holds that peo­ple should re­turn to their home­towns for Spring Fes­ti­val, the most im­por­tant Chi­nese feast day, with their fam­i­lies, and this cre­ates an an­nual travel rush that is the world’s largest re­cur­rent hu­man mi­gra­tion. Spring Fes­ti­val be­gins on Jan 31.

More than 240 mil­lion trips were made dur­ing this year’s chun­yun, from Jan 26 to March 6, av­er­ag­ing 6 mil­lion each day, statis­tics showed.

Peo­ple other than mi­grant work­ers can re­serve tick­ets for sched­uled trains 20 days be­fore the travel date if they make the book­ing on the In­ter­net or over the tele­phone. They can also buy tick­ets at rail­way sta­tions, ticket agen­cies or au­to­matic ticket sellers 18 days ahead of the de­par­ture date.

All tem­po­rary train ser­vices mo­bi­lized for chun­yun will first meet the needs of mi­grant work­ers, the cor­po­ra­tion added.

By the end of 2012, there were 262.61 mil­lion mi­grant work­ers in China, or 19.39 per­cent of the pop­u­la­tion, ac­cord­ing to the Na­tional Bu­reau of Statis­tics.

In an­other move to fa­cil­i­tate pas­sen­ger ticket sales and curb hoard­ing of tick­ets, the cor­po­ra­tion has raised the rate a pas­sen­ger must pay for re­turn­ing a ticket for a train op­er­at­ing dur­ing chun­yun.

Nor­mally, pas­sen­gers are charged about 5 per­cent of the ticket if they re­turn it 48 hours or ear­lier be­fore the train’s de­par­ture. A 10 per­cent rate will be charged if the ticket is re­turned 24 to 48 hours be­fore de­par­ture. A ticket re­turned within 24 hours of de­par­ture is sub­ject to a 20 per­cent rate.

How­ever, pas­sen­gers will pay 20 per­cent of their ticket’s price re­gard­less of when they re­turn the ticket if the train de­parts within chun­yun.

The ad­just­ment was made be­cause train tick­ets are in short sup­ply dur­ing peak pe­ri­ods and many peo­ple buy more tick­ets than they need.

China Rail­way Cor­po­ra­tion also is­sued an iPhone ap­pli­ca­tion for book­ing tick­ets. Users have com­plained that the ap­pli­ca­tion is slow and can­not com­pete with oth­ers with sim­i­lar func­tions that were de­vel­oped by com­pa­nies or in­di­vid­ual pro­gram­mers.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from China

© PressReader. All rights reserved.