Chinese tourists' anticipation toward the upcoming May Day holidays and enthusiasm to travel have been dampened as hotel rates in some popular tourism destinations skyrocket, with multiple market watchdogs in localities vowing to curb potential rises.
Hotel rates in tourist destinations such as Lijiang and Dali in Southwest China's Yunnan Province, Xi'an in Northwest China's Shaanxi Province and Hangzhou in East China's Zhejiang Province have surged two to five times for the long-awaited holidays, and netizens are complaining about hotel "assassins," a buzzword for commodities or services with much higher prices than expected.
On some travel platforms, the rate for a three-star hotel room in Xishuangbanna, Yunnan is RMB 289 ($42) for one night if tourists check in on April 25, but it will cost RMB 1,352 per night if tourists check in on May 1.
From budget inns and high-end hotels to luxury resorts, most hotels in China have doubled or even tripled their rates, with some places costing thousands of yuan.
In a move to curb potential gouging during the holidays, the local market regulators in popular destination Zibo in East China's Shandong Province issued a notice on Saturday, demanding that hotel rates for the upcoming holidays should not rise by more than 50%, with violators facing a penalty. The reference rate will be based on the actual rates from March 1 and 31, the notice read.
Market watchdogs in other tourism destinations including Taijiang county in Southwest China's Guizhou Province, Changsha in Central China's Hunan Province and Yanji in Northeast China's Jilin Province have followed suit.
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