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Travel sites cashing in on 'blind box' craze

04/23/2021| 7:42:30 PM|

Buyers never know what they are getting until they open one.

The "blind box" fad has expanded to the tourism industry.

A blind box, known as manghe in China, contains hand-sized toys. A set of boxes contain a number of similar toys with the same style, theme and packaging. Buyers never know what they are getting until they open one.

Many young people in China have become obsessed with it, because they enjoy the fun of uncertainty and the delight of the moment when they open the boxes.

Cashing in on the craze, online travel operator Tongcheng-Elong launched an air ticket blind box product priced at 98 yuan (USD 15) earlier this month, attracting more than 20 million buyers and selling out quickly.

People can choose a departure city, while the destination and departure time are both unknown. If they do not like the "content" after opening the box, they can get a full refund.

Other major online tourism service providers in China such as Trip.com and Alibaba's travel site Fliggy have joined the craze with similar products.

Trip.com is offering a hotel blind box priced at RMB 699 and RMB 999 with a one-night accommodation, and a RMB 99 airline blind box with more than 100 domestic destinations.

Unlike the airline blind box, people can choose the destination of the hotel blind box, but they do not know which hotel.

The promotion runs from April 19 to May 12, and Chengdu, Sanya, Guangzhou, Shanghai and Zhuhai are some of the most popular destinations, Trip.com said.

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TAGS: Tongcheng-Elong | Trip.com | Fliggy | blind box |
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