China lifted some COVID-19 restrictions on international passenger flights on Sunday, and as the Spring Festival holiday nears, domestic and international tourism is expected to pick up.
According to the Civil Aviation Administration of China, measures will be taken to ensure that outbound tourism for Chinese citizens will resume in an orderly manner and that freight at various ports will return to levels that existed prior to the outbreak.
The resumption of accepting and approving applications for ordinary passports from Chinese citizens for purposes of tourism and visiting friends abroad is one of the improved policies and measures.
According to a statement issued by the State Council Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office, China also improved the rules governing travel between the mainland and Hong Kong and Macao.
According to the document, international travelers will be able to enter the mainland through Hong Kong and Macao, and there will be no more restrictions on the passenger load factor for flights between the mainland and Hong Kong and Macao.
On Monday, the Ministry of Culture and Tourism reported that during the three days of the previous New Year’s holiday, there were approximately 52.7 million domestic tourist visits, an increase of 0.44 percent year over year.
The ministry says that over the holiday, tourism revenue totaled more than 26.5 billion yuan, or about $3.8 billion. This is an increase of 4% from the same time last year.
The Ministry of Culture and Tourism stated, “The national culture and tourism market is generally safe, smooth, and orderly.”
According to the ministry, short-distance tours are popular with holiday travelers, and young people continue to enjoy ice and snow activities and camping.
The country’s medium- and long-distance travel shows a steady recovery, as some online travel agencies report a significant rise in ticket bookings for cross-provincial and cross-border tourism during the holiday season.
It is anticipated that the recovery of China’s outbound travel will play a significant role in the recovery of both domestic and international tourism markets due to the significant number of potential Chinese tourists.
According to the Chinese online travel agency Ctrip, searches for overseas destinations increased by 1,000 percent within a half hour of the reopening policy announcement, reaching a three-year high.
This wave of outbound travel has already benefited a number of Asian nations. According to Trip.com Group data, the number of orders for sold outbound flight tickets increased by 254 percent on December 27 compared to the previous day.
The Republic of Korea, Thailand, Singapore, and Japan were among the most popular destinations for Chinese tourists.
Since December 27, tourism authorities in Thailand, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Denmark have posted on Weibo inviting Chinese tourists to visit, as China’s policy of optimizing travel regulations continues to pique global interest.