China's ‘golden week’ travel hampered by slowing economy, weaker yuan
10/08/2019|10:25:33 AM|SCMP

Many Chinese appear to be opting to stay at home during this year’s week-long National Day holiday, as the economy stutters amid a trade war with the United States and a weakening currency makes consumers cautious about splurging on expensive holidays, but their spending on food and entertainment does not seem to be greatly affected.

National Day on October 1 marked the start of “golden week” in China, a seven-day holiday when millions of Chinese traditionally travel across the country to splurge at shops and restaurants.

While some stores and restaurants in Beijing’s central business district were shut in the lead up to a military parade on October 1, it has been business as usual since Wednesday.

Chinese traditionally spend large amounts on travel during golden week, but huge crowds at popular tourist sites appear to have deterred some travellers, while a weaker yuan and slowing real income growth have dampened the appetite of many to buy holiday packages.

Online travel site International said that weak outbound travel demand and a decline in air ticket prices may put pressure on its earnings in the third quarter. The US-China trade war, the weaker yuan and protests in Hong Kong meant fewer people were travelling to Hong Kong and Taiwan, which usually account for one-third of Chinese outbound trips.

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