Search volumes for group tours and self-guided travel skyrocketed by 500 percent after China announced to resume group tours across the country, while overseas tours remain suspended, data from travel agency Trip.com showed.
China’s Ministry of Culture and Tourism issued a circular on Tuesday resuming group tours across the country, while overseas tours remain suspended.
In order to check the spread of the coronavirus, each provincial (regional, municipal) cultural and tourism department can resume group tours and flight ticket plus hotel booking for travel agencies and online tourism enterprises with the consent of the local party committee and government, read the circular posted on the ministry’s website.
Overseas tours remain suspended for the time being. The cap on visitors traveling to scenic spots has been adjusted up to 50 percent from the previous 30 percent of maximum capacity, according to the ministry.
“As the most representative tourism product, group tours will lead the whole sector’s full resumption,” said Gou Zhipeng, president of Chinese online travel agency Qunar.com.
There are more than 5,500 group tour products on Qunar.com, waiting to kick off sales following approval from the relevant department, the company told the Global Times on Tuesday.
As of 9 p.m. on Tuesday, online searches for group tours increased fourfold on Qunar.com, with tours to South China’s Hainan island, Southwest China’s Yunnan Province and eastern China being the most popular destinations.
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