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Golden relationship: Chinese tourists still in love after 18 years

By Chen Ziyan (chinadaily.com.cn) Updated: 2016-10-08 16:29 Comments


Golden relationship: Chinese tourists still in love after 18 years

Since the National Day holiday or the Golden Week, one of the country's biggest holidays of the year was established on Oct 1, 1999, Chinese people have never stopped showing their love to it. Statistics show that about 28 million Chinese went travelling around the country during the first weeklong holiday in that year.

With the growing surge during the past 18 years, the tourist number and spending both hit record high this year. The latest official statistics show a total of 593 million tourists visited tourist attractions around the country during the Golden Week holiday, up 12.8 percent year on year. And the spending rose 14.4 percent year on year to 482.2 billion yuan ($72.3b) during this period.

But the numbers are just part of the story. Compared to the early years, Chinese tourists are embracing the changes in tourism sector more rapidly.

Smartphone travel bookings a new trend

With the increasing popularity of modern technology, more online services for smartphones are available.

A latest report jointly released by China Tourism Academy and Ctrip, an online travel agency, found that 64 percent of Chinese booked their flights, hotels, travel routes on mobile devices during this year's National Daily holiday.

"I still remember I booked a hotel room with a telephone during the country's first national day holiday," Shanghai citizen Tao Zengrui said. "This year also I booked a hotel, but through an app on a smartphone."

According to the report, more than two million Chinese tourists made travel reservations to 1,230 foreign destinations through online agencies and mobile apps. Many online products provided by the travel agencies such as customized tours and local travel experiences have becoming more popular among visitors.

The report shows that working people aged 23 to 55 accounts for about 60 percent of the tourists, and seniors above 50 accounting for 21 percent are getting more used to online booking.

Besides, the report also suggests that female tourists have been leading the tourism industry as they accounted for 59 percent of all visitors, 18 percentage higher compared to their male counterparts.

In pics: National Day: What has changed, what hasn't in 18 years

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