Bookings for international destinations surge as China eases measures

Updated: Dec 27, 2022 By Zhang Jie Print
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Tourists wait in line for checking in at Beijing Capital International Airport, Dec 11, 2022. [Photo/VCG]

The search volume of international flight tickets is surging in China after the country announced to downgrade the management of COVID-19 from Jan 8, the news website reported on Tuesday.

According to the online travel agency Qunar, the international flight ticket search volume increased sevenfold within 15 minutes after the new COVID-19 management measures were announced, and the hot destinations are Thailand, Japan, and South Korea.

Data from another online travel platform Ctrip showed that the search volume to popular overseas destinations increased tenfold year-on-year compared with the same period of last year within 30 minutes after the information was announced. Moreover, the search volume of outbound flight tickets and hotels reached a three-year high.

Some hot tourism destinations search volume saw a rapid growth for the upcoming Spring Festival holiday, which falls on Jan 21 to 27 next year. The top 10 hot destinations are Macao, Hong Kong, Japan, Thailand, South Korea, the US, Singapore, Malaysia, Australia, and the UK, according to Ctrip. 

The tourism service provider said the search volume of international flight tickets jumped 850 percent, and the visa service search volume grew tenfold after the information was announced. Japan, South Korea, and Thailand are the top 3 overseas destinations to Chinese tourists. The hot outbound flight destinations are Bangkok, Tokyo, Seoul, Los Angeles and Singapore.

The search users to outbound tourism are mainly from Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, said the

The Chinese mainland customers' average spending to outbound flight tickets and high-end hotels increased by 64 percent and 40 percent during nearly half a year, compared with the same period before the COVID-19 epidemic, said Ctrip.

With tourism supply-side recovery, and inflation control in major economies , the overall price of international flight tickets and outbound hotels is expected to fall back; however, due to the supply-side facilities, and manpower recovery still exists short-term constraints, the price needs time to fall, said the, citing Fang Zeqian, an industry analyst at Group.

As the new COVID-19 management measures implementing, and the airline operating capacity recovering, the summer vacation of 2023 may usher in the peak of entry and exit, said the, citing Lan Xiang, director of Qunar's data research department.

Moreover, visa service still has constraints in short-time, said the Ctrip. Although most of overseas countries have opened their visa applications, due to staff shortage in many embassies and consulates in China, the visa applications will be delayed.

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