Leading Chinese online travel agency Ctrip will launch a tailored service channel catering to tourism spending in destinations along the country's high-speed railways in its latest efforts to tap the domestic tourism market.
The company on Monday announced a plan to start a new sub-platform in its mobile app, offering one-stop booking services ranging from hotels to scenic spots tickets which cover all cities along high-speed railways.
China had more than 25,000 km of high-speed railways by the end of 2017. The country aims to increase high-speed railway mileage to 30,000 km by 2020, covering over 80 percent of China's big cities.
James Liang, Ctrip's co-founder and executive chairman predicted China's high-speed-railway-based tourism market would exceed 100 billion yuan (about 14.6 billion U.S. dollars) by 2020 and over half of the estimated 3-billion passenger trips on high-speed railways will be made for tourism purposes by 2025.
The Nasdaq-listed company saw its net revenue gain 13 percent year on year to hit 7.3 billion yuan in the second quarter of this year, while net income attributed to Ctrip's shareholders soared 564 percent year on year to reach 2.4 billion yuan.
Tourism has become an emerging contributor to China's economic growth as the sector raked in about 5.4 trillion yuan in revenue last year, up 15.1 percent year on year. Tourism revenue stood at about 2.45 trillion for the first half of 2018, up 12.5 percent year on year, data showed.
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