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China Youth Travel Service Ltd

China Youth Travel Service Ltd (CYTS) was established through fund-raising organized by the China Youth Travel Service Group, an enterprise directly under the Communist Youth League Central Committee.

CYTS went public on the Shanghai Stock Exchange in 1997. It is the president of the China Association of Travel Services, the first group of demonstration entities of National Tourism Standardization and the first of 5A travel agencies in Beijing, and the winner of the “Forbidden City Cup” in Beijing. It is a “Well-known TrademarK” in China.

China Youth Travel Service establishes the first professional holiday brand–Various Independent Travel - in 2008.

Culture is the soul of tourism, and tourism is the carrier of culture. As the top brand and operator in the cultural tourism industry in China, CYTS focuses on high-quality cultural tourism products and professional services, and providing customers with good happy experiences. CYTS is devoted to innovation and upgrading its services. It has been working on the integration and development of a cultural tourism value chain, and catering for the needs of cultural tourism both home and abroad.

The “Hear the sea” travel group for the blind organized by China Youth Travel Service.

It owns a series of famous enterprises and brands, including CYTS, Aoyou.com, Various Independent Travel, CYTS Exhibition, Wuzhen, Gubei Watertown, and Shanshui Fashion Hotel. It has branches in more than 30 cities around the world, including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Tianjin, Nanjing, Hangzhou, Shenzhen, Chengdu, Urumqi, Shijiazhuang, Taiyuan, Nanning, Tokyo, Vancouver, and Hong Kong.  

Contact Us:

Address: Floor 5-6, Building 3, Yard 5, Lanxiu West Road, Lucheng Town, Tongzhou District, Beijing

Tel: 010-55560562

Email: [email protected]

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China Youth Travel Industry

China Youth Travel Industry

In recent years, the Chinese youth travel industry has been booming, as the number of Chinese youth looking to explore the world has grown significantly. This surge in youth tourism has had a considerable impact on the Chinese economy, with youth travel growing more than ten times faster than China’s overall tourism growth rate. According to Chinese tourism authorities, China’s youth tourism industry has become the fifth largest in the world.

The primary driver of the Chinese youth travel industry has been the explosion of the nation’s middle class, which now has a vastly larger disposable income to spend on leisure activities such as travel. In addition, ongoing changes in the Chinese lifestyle of young people have seen them yearning for more exciting, purposeful and emotionally fulfilling travel experiences. Globalization has been another major factor, as Chinese youth are increasingly connected to the world and see traveling as a way to create meaningful experiences abroad. However, the growth of the Chinese youth travel industry has been countered somewhat by high costs and cultural differences between provided by Chinese travel agents and what is demanded by youth travelers.

The success of the Chinese youth travel industry has had repercussions for China’s overall tourism industry, with more youth travelers contributing their ideas to the tourism industry. As more Chinese youth explore the world, they are bringing back new experiences, trends and companies to the Chinese market, such as non-hotel accommodation, volunteer programs and specialized tour packages. Moreover, with their rise in education levels, Chinese youth are becoming increasingly sophisticated in their travel choices, making the industry more competitive.

However, for travel companies to tap into the full potential of this industry, they need to find ways to adapt to the changing needs of Chinese youth travelers. This includes providing more personalized, purposeful and culturally-enriching experiences, as well as leveraging digital technologies such as big data, artificial intelligence and mobile platforms to create more engaging, innovative and targeted offers. Travel companies must also adopt creative marketing and promotional campaigns that appeal to the more discerning Chinese travel market. Ultimately, by better understanding the needs of Chinese youth travelers, travel companies have an opportunity to capitalize on the growth of this vibrant, ever-evolving industry.

Travel Experience

China Youth Travel Industry

The Chinese youth travel experience is distinctly different from those of other demographics. First, cost is an important factor for Chinese youth travelers, as they are often on a tight budget. Although the Chinese youth travel market is booming, a large portion of travelers are hesitant to spend too much on travel experiences. To accommodate this demand, travel companies should strive to offer cost-efficient services such as package deals and discounts.

Furthermore, Chinese youth travelers are looking for meaningful experiences at their travel destinations. They are often willing to explore remote locations to have unique, culturally enriching encounters with local people and their lifestyles. As such, travel companies should consider introducing them to more off-the-beaten-track places. Additionally, the appeal of visiting attractive, iconic attractions and tourist sites should not be overlooked either.

Finally, Chinese youth travelers are inherently tech-savvy, being brought up using mobile devices and social media. This means that for travel companies to properly connect with the youth market, they require an online presence that makes use of such technologies. Travel companies need to pay particular attention to creating targeted, engaging social media campaigns, as well as having a slick and user-friendly mobile platform to enable seamless and hassle-free bookings.

Youth Travel Trends

For travel companies looking to capitalize on the Chinese youth travel market, it is important to keep up to date with travel trends, as the industry is ever-evolving. One of the most prominent trends among Chinese youth travelers is the rise of volunteer travel, as more and more young Chinese are looking for engaging, purposeful experiences. This has seen the emergence of numerous charity programs and socially-responsible trips.It is also worth noting, however, that young Chinese travelers prefer shorter trips, typically two weeks or less in duration. As such, travel companies should emphasize providing shorter trips with multiple destinations. This allows them to engage with various cultures and experiences within a relatively short period of time.

China Youth Travel Industry

In addition, Chinese youth are now looking for more adventurous activities such as cliff diving, bungee jumping and skydiving, as well as attending music festivals around the globe. This has led to the rise of extreme tourism, which has seen a significant uptick in recent years. Similarly, the rise of the sharing economy has seen young Chinese taking advantage of shared travel and accommodation services, as these tend to be more affordable and convenient than traditional options.

Given the changing nature of the Chinese youth travel market, travel companies must be prepared to continually adjust their offering if they want to remain competitive. From providing shorter trips to more adventurous activities, offering novel and diverse experiences, and being abreast of recent industry trends, the Chinese youth travel industry presents a brave and exciting new world of opportunities.

Cultural Considerations

As with all sectors of the travel industry, cultural considerations should be taken into account when catering to Chinese youth travelers. To ensure smooth interactions, Chinese youth travelers should be made aware of the cultural norms and etiquette of their destination ahead of time. This is especially important when traveling to destinations with vastly different cultures, as Chinese youth travelers can be more susceptible to experiencing culture shock. Understanding the local culture can help Chinese youth travelers better connect with locals, feel more relaxed and ultimately enjoy a more fulfilling experience.

Additionally, travel companies should consider the diversity of cultures within China itself. While many of the youth travelers are from the major metropolises, there is a growing demand from travelers from smaller Chinese cities, who may have different expectations. Knowing the preferences of each local market may help travel companies better serve these diversified traveler groups.

China Youth Travel Industry

Finally, the language barrier can be challenging for Chinese youth travelers, especially when traveling to destinations where the local language is not spoken. Travel companies should consider providing translation services to make it easier for Chinese youth travelers to interact with locals and better experience the destination. Furthermore, providing travel guides and walking tours in both English and Mandarin may also aid the overall travel experience.

Technology for Chinese Youth Travel

Given the tech-savvy nature of Chinese youth travelers, digital technology is often a key factor for them when considering a travel destination. As such, it is paramount that their entire journey be run on digital platforms, from booking to post-travel. By providing an integrated online service, Travel companies can ensure that their customers have a seamless, hassle-free experience.

Moreover, travel companies should leverage on available big data and artificial intelligence technologies to better understand the preferences of their Chinese youth customers. By collecting their data, travel companies are able to tailor their offers and making personalized recommendations to their customers based on their travel history and previous interactions. For example, travel companies may be able to suggest a tailored package taking into consideration data such as the traveler’s past interests, budget and lifestyle.

Finally, data analytics can be used to identify emerging industry trends and to anticipate what the travel needs of Chinese youth travelers will be in the future. This data can be used to create more innovative and targeted travel offerings, helping travel companies to stay ahead of their competitors in the ever-evolving Chinese youth travel industry.

Youth Engagement

China Youth Travel Industry

Engagement is an important component of the Chinese youth travel industry. Travel companies should consider engaging with Chinese youth travelers in order to better understand their needs and establish meaningful relationships with them. One of the best ways to do this is through social media, which can be used to listen to and reach out to Chinese youth travelers. Additionally, travel companies should consider organizing educational seminars, workshops and tours aimed at engaging with Chinese youth travelers. By providing an accessible platform where they can learn more about travel trends and experiences, travel companies can better connect with young travelers.

Moreover, travel companies should consider making use of influencers to reach a wider audience. Influencer marketing has increased in popularity among Chinese youth travelers, and by leveraging on popular influencers who have built sizable followings, travel companies can amplify their visibility and connect to younger audiences. Additionally, by giving influencers exclusive deals and early access to new experiences, travel companies can build strong and long-lasting relationships with Chinese youth travelers, helping them to become more loyal and regular customers.

Finally, travel companies should consider teaming up with universities and student associations to create engaging travel programs. This not only allows travel companies to directly target a student audience, but also facilitates students in fulfilling their travel needs, as they can get guidance on how to plan a successful trip. Additionally, travel companies can gain valuable insights from these student associations that can be used to shape their marketing strategies and create more tailored experiences.

Digital Payment

Finally, the Chinese youth travel experience often involves the use of digital payments. As such, travel companies should ensure they are prepared to handle these payments securely and efficiently, as it is one of the most important aspects of the customer experience. This involves having reliable and secure payment gateways integrated into their digital platforms, as well as understanding the local digital payment ecosystems.

China Youth Travel Industry

Additionally, travel companies should consider providing customers with convenient digital payment methods, such as mobile payment apps. This would enable Chinese youth travelers to easily pay for their trips while abroad without requiring them to use cash or traditional payment methods. Furthermore, travel companies should also consider offering customers the option of using mobile wallets to store their funds, as this can be more convenient for Chinese youth travelers given the ubiquity of the internet and mobile payment apps in China.

Overall, the rise of digital payments is a key element of the Chinese youth travel experience, as Chinese youth travelers rely heavily on their mobile devices and digital platforms. As such, it is important for travel companies to ensure that their digital payment system is reliable and secure, as this is often a deciding factor for Chinese youth travelers when it comes to booking a trip.

John Melendez

John Melendez

John J. Melendez is a journalist, author, and commentator specializing in Chinese culture, politics, and international relations. He is a frequent guest on radio and television programs, and is the author of several books on Chinese culture and politics. He currently resides in Beijing, China.

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Exploring Guangdong with China Youth Travel Service: A Guide for Young Travelers

Guangdong, a province in southern China, is known for its diverse landscapes, vibrant culture, and delicious food. It is a popular destination for young travelers, offering a wide range of activities and experiences that cater to different interests. However, planning a trip to Guangdong can be overwhelming, especially for those who are unfamiliar with the area. This is where China Youth Travel Service Guangdong comes in. As a leading provider of travel services for young travelers, they are dedicated to helping visitors discover the best of Guangdong.

One of the biggest advantages of using China Youth Travel Service Guangdong is their extensive knowledge of the province. The team of experts at this branch has a deep understanding of Guangdong and its many destinations, and can provide valuable insights into what to see and do in each area. They can help you plan an itinerary that’s tailored to your interests and budget, ensuring that you make the most of your time in Guangdong.

Cheap flights with cashback

Another major advantage of using China Youth Travel Service Guangdong is their ability to handle all the logistics of your trip. This includes everything from booking flights and hotels to arranging transportation and guides. With their wealth of experience in handling these logistics, you can relax and enjoy your trip without worrying about the details. They can also provide assistance with visa requirements, ensuring that you have all the necessary documents to enter the country.

The third advantage of using China Youth Travel Service Guangdong is their ability to provide 24/7 support during your trip. This is especially important in case of any unexpected issues that may arise. The team has a dedicated support staff who are available to assist you with any questions or concerns you might have, ensuring that your trip goes smoothly.

In addition, China Youth Travel Service Guangdong offers a wide range of services such as booking tours, planning your visit to the landmarks and temples, and providing you with a guide who can give you a deeper understanding of the history and culture of Guangdong. They also have a team of local guides who can provide you with a unique perspective of the local culture, customs and ways of life, catering to the interests of young travelers. They can also help you with special requests or needs you may have, such as booking your accommodation in a specific area or arranging transportation to and from the airport.

In conclusion, using China Youth Travel Service Guangdong is an excellent way to ensure a smooth and enjoyable trip to Guangdong. With their extensive knowledge of the province, ability to handle logistics, 24/7 support and local guides, young travelers can explore Guangdong with ease and discover the best of this fascinating destination. So why wait? Book your Guangdong adventure today with China Youth Travel Service Guangdong and experience the beauty of this province with confidence.

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  • Ancient & Modern China Study Tour for Students
  • ETC-B14 Tour Code

china youth travel

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China travel map - Ancient & Modern China Study Tour for Students

The students or young travelers have the big ambitions to travel in a fabulous new land to see one of world's oldest civilization, its unique culture, radpid modern development, real insight of life despite the language and other barriers. We offer this educational study trip of China to fulfill their desire with first hand experience in the country's most popular destinations. Explore Beijing and Xian, two historical capitals and the bustling metropolis Shanghai, to experience the dramatic old and new China. Apart from visiting the UNESCO-protected world heritages and skyscrapers, such as the Great Wall, Forbidden City, Terra Cotta Warriors, Shanghai Tower, you'll also take many special lessons & activities on Tai Chi, traditional Chinese etiquette, dumpling making, mini Terracotta making, Beijing Opera mask painting ... 

Duration: 9 days & 8 nights

Destinations:  Beijing - Xian - Shanghai

Customize Your Tour: ☑  Travel Dates  ☑ Your Interests  ☑ Your Travel Style

Itinerary Expand All Collapse All

1 day 1 arrival in beijing.

Embark the fantastic journey to China with classmates. Upon arrival at the Beijing Daxing International Airport , one of world's biggest and busiest airports, be met and greeted by your tour guide, and transfer to your hotel at downtown. Beijing is the political and cultural center of China, with numerous important ancient sites. Enjoy the welcome dinner with a briefing of the tour.

Meal:  D

2 Day 2 Imperial Forbidden City & Hutong with Peking Opera facial makeup Lesson

Wake up in China's dynasty capital and have hearty breakfast with all the students at hotel. Navigate to the huge Tiananmen Square , the heart of China, where you can see some monuments and important buildings, including Tiananmen Rostrum where Chairman Mao's portrait is still hung up. Wall through the big red gate to enter the Forbidden City to unveil the mystery of Chinese Imperial Palace of Ming and Qing Dynasty. Take a lesson to study the essence and culmination of traditional Chinese architectural accomplishment with over 500 years’ history. In the afternoon, visit Hutong . The narrow lanes is an essential part of the old town of Beijing, where you will see the local Beijingers' way of life. Furthermore, students will take an interesting class here - to do the Peking Opera facial makeup .

Meal: B, L, D

Forbidden City

3 Day 3 Old and New of Beijing: Mutianyu Great Wall, National Centre for the Performing Arts

Today the class will go outing to Mutianyu Great Wall . The symbol of China, the Great Wall is a larger-than-life historic site, as long as 21,196 km (13,171 mi), with a history of over 2000 years. Mutianyu is one of the most important and best-kept sections of the Great Wall. After ascendthe top, you can view the North China landscape. Students can learn the history and fun facts of the Great Wall. They may even imagine how this ancient battlefield worked two millenniums ago. And now it is picnic lunch time Enjoy the foods, nature and company of classmates. Drive back to downtown, and view the modern side of Beijing on route. Have an exterior visit of Bird's Nest , one of the main venues for 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. Then step into  National Centre for the Performing Arts , one of the modern landmarks of Beijing, uniquely designed by French architect Paul Andreu. It features opera house, concert hall, theater, art exhibition hall, restaurant, video store and other supporting facilities. 

Mutianyu Great Wall

4 Day 4 Tai Chi Lesson at Temple of Heaven, Beijing to Xian by Bullet Train Ride

It is a day for some morning exercise and kung fu learning. Visit Temple of Heaven , a scared site where the ancient emperor worshipped the God for good harvests and stable reign. Right here, a Tai Chi teacher has been waiting for your class. Students will learn from him/her to practice Tai Chi , a classic form of Chinese martial art. Practice the soft moves, you will feel energetic and refreshed. Later, mingle with local Chinese passengers to take the fast and comfortable bullet train to Xian. You will experience the advanced HSR system, which is one of China's greatest modern achievements. Arrive Xian, which was a center of the world during Tang Dynasty. 

5 Day 5 Make Mini Terra Cotta Warrior, Wild Goose Pagoda, Han Etiquette Class

Today, you will see one of world's most important archeological findings - the Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses Museum . It is known as the eighth wonder of the world. The Terracotta Army from Qin Dynasy was the burial objects of Emperor Qinshihuang, and shows the military might during the cold weapon era. Here's a rare chance that all the students can make their own mini terracotta soldier with clay. Proceed to visit a Tang Dynasty pagoda and the landmark of Xian city - Big Wild Goose Pagoda . Students should be interested in the legendary stories of Master Xuanzang who traveled on the Silk Road to bring Buddhist classics from India to Xian. Also enjoy the beautifu l  music fountain on the Wild Goose Pagoda North Square (one of Aisa's biggest). Later, take a    traditional Han Etiquette class at  Grand Tang Dynasty Ever Bright City . All students will put on the Han Clothing, and learn from the Teacher about the Dress etiquette and how to salute, bow, greet, etc. according to the traditional Chinese etiquette.

  You May Want to Know  

  • We can rent the Han costume for one or two days for your student tour in China based on your needs, so that you can wear it and take photos at different sites.

Student tour in Xian

6 Day 6 Xian City Wall Biking, Making Dumpling at Local Family, Xian to Shanghai

This morning, your class will get in China's best preserved ancient city wall , 13.7m long and around 15m wide, which saw the heyday of the Silk Road a thousand year ago. Enjoy a brisk bike on the wall - an exciting activity for the energetic girls and boys. Then be invited by a local family to their home, chatting with friendly hosts. Xian people are famous for their hospitality. Learn from them t o make dumpling , the most popular Chinese food. Enjoy the dumpling made yourself for lunch. Wave goodbye, and continue your school trip, getting to Shanghai after an air journey. Shanghai is the busiest and most dynamic city in China, and the best place to witness the county’s modern tale .

Making dumpling

7 Day 7 Historial & Futuristic Shanghai, Shanghai Musuem & Shanghai Tower

Shangahi boasts one of China's best museums  - Shanghai Museum , with mainly an art collection of 140,000 precious relics, featuring bronzes, ceramics, paintings and calligraphy. Students will further know China's art history. Take a walk of People’s Park , known as the center of Shanghai. Here you’ll find a matchmaking corner, even very interesting for the young people to know China’s “new form” of dating. Then learn Shanghai’s turbulent modern history, visiting the former French Concession . And drive through Pudong New District and view the most fast-growing financial and economic areas in China. And take the elevator to get in Shangahi Tower , so far China’s tallest and world’s second tallest building. At its observation deck, you can take in an amazing high-altitude view and glimpse China’s future.

8 Day 8 Zhujiajiao Water Town, Yu Garden, The Bund

After breakfast, drive out of downtown to Zhujiajiao , an ancient town with the history of 1700 years old, which renowned as the “Venice of the east’’. The whole town is surrounded by water. It is a place with admires antiquated architecture, tranquil canals and crumbling bridges. Back to downtown in the afternoon, you will visit Yu Garden , one of the most famous gardens in China. Chinese garden is so different from western style, and Yu Garden is a typical one with pavilions, halls, rockeries, ponds and cloisters with unique characteristics. Tour ends at the Bund , to admire the 20th-century colonial buildings and learn more about Shanghai's history. Meal: B, L, D  

Student tour in Shanghai

9 Day 9 Maglev Train, Shanghai departure

If you wish, take a Maglev train, running at 300-430 KM/H, and transfer to the airport your flight back home. End of your 9 days China school tour. Welcome to China again!

What's included

1-on-1 travel consultant.

Your China based expert listens to your wishes carefully, provides professional advice, ensures unlimited itinerary revisions before done and 24/7 helpline service while traveling.

Private Local Guide and Driver

Your guides are friendly, helpful and knowledgeable, and your drivers are professional, polite and patient. They are very flexible to accommodate your personal needs and happy to show you the local attractions, history, culture, foods and real life.  Private transfers from hotel to attractions, airport or train station are also included.

Accommodation to Suite Your Preference

In each place, we hand pick hotels ranging from luxury 5 star, superior 4 star to comfortable 3 star. Luxury or cozy boutique hotels and budget guesthouses are also among your choices. You could decide where to stay to meet your taste and budget.

Gourmet Meals

Most of the hotels we select offer both Western and Chinese buffet breakfast. Lunch and dinner included are arranged in selected restaurants to taste authentic Chinese cuisine and local specialties. Thus you may also have a unique food tour. Meals specified in itinerary as B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner.

Attractions and Activities Listed on the Itinerary

Our China tour packages have included the (first/main) entry to all attractions and the expenses of activities on the itinerary (except the optional activities).

Internal Transportation

Based on your needs, we could make bookings of internal transportation, including domestic flights, inter-city trains, long-distance bus, etc.

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WTAs

China CYTS Tours Holding Co., Ltd. was founded and listed in 1997 in Shanghai Stock Exchange with China Youth Travel Service as its initiator. It also won the credentials of the President of China Travel Service Association (CATS), the first standardized national tourism demonstration organization, and the national model for tourism service quality. “Chinese well-known trademark” was entitled to CYTS by State Administration for Industry and Commerce.

As the first travel agency after reform and opening up, and A-share listed corporation in China’s tourism industry, the CYTS, ranking the No.1 travel agency group, embraces innovation as the fundamental driving forces for its growth, and constantly promotes the coordination and extension of tourism chain of value, gaining competitive edge in scenic areas, MICE, vacation, sightseeing, hotel operation, especially online business and developing into the leading brand and one comprehensive operative corporation in China’s tourism industry.The CYTS, now with annual reception of 10 million tourists and revenues of 10 billion yuan.

As a leading tourism corporation, growing together with reform and opening up, the CYTS is committed to delight the consumers with quality cultural tourism products and professional service, aiming to develop into an international comprehensive tourism operator with innovation, reliability, and respect.

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China Family Travel with Kids

China Family Travel with Kids

Why you should take your kids to visit China?

Traveling China with kids is a fun, entertaining and educational trip. The profound culture, great history, amazing natural landscape, unique food and budget shopping make the Middle Kingdom the perfect destination for family travel. Todays’ China has a fabulous blend of the old and new. You can switch from the vibrant modern metropolis to peaceful countryside, from hidden ancient streets to the prosperous shopping mall, which will be a bonding experience the kids will remember for a lifetime.

There are a bunch of places that suit families with children of all ages. Besides, it is safe and easy to travel with family in China because all the destinations are connected by fast flights, train or bus. To visit the iconic tourist sites like the Great Wall, Forbidden City, and Terracotta Warriors is MUST things to do on the list, which is also a great history class for your kids. On the other hand, family-friendly activity is one of the most important parts of family travel. Here in China, you totally don’t have to worry find no things to do for your kids – visiting the cute Giant Panda or even having a volunteering job, leisurely hiking the Great Wall, making new friends with local kids in the custom parks, entertaining in the amusement parks, taking Kungfu class, enjoying acrobatic show… the rest is more.

At the same time, don’t worry about the accommodation, dinning, transportation in China. Comfort, fun, experience… all are acquirable if you plan the trip in advance well.

How to plan your family travel

  • Choose the best time to visit - all seasons are available, but avoidthe crowing holidays in China
  • Choose ideal places for family travel - Beijing, Xian, Shanghai, HK, Harbin,Chengdu, Luoyang, etc
  • Find kid-friendly activities in China - Panda cuddling, Great Wall hiking,Kungfu class, flying kite...
  • Learn essential tips for kid travel - food and drinking, accommodation,medical issues, transfer...
  • Contact a realiable travel agency to arrange a tour

Top Destinations for Family China Travel

Attach a great importance on choosing the destinations for your family travel in China is very necessary. A family-friendly destination should have interesting sites to visit, fun activities to take part in, covenient transfer, excellent accommodation. Following are top 8 destinations for your family trip.

Family Travel in China

The advantages of Beijing are - covenient international arrival, great accommodation and dinning for family. Besides, there are 7 UNESCO World Heritage Sites here.

Family Travel in China

Your will get enjoyable holiday here because people are respectful, streets are clean, facilities are modern. Besides, the attractions and activities are diverse and flexible.

Family Travel in China

Harbin is the best destination for family winter holiday.The annual International Ice and Snow Festival which is usually held from December to the February of next year.

Family Travel in China

Explore the slow-pace local life at parks, and taste the spicy hot pot in a busy restaurant. But don’t miss the most important things to do – visit the cute Giant Panda.

Family Travel in China

Xian is the best place for your kids to learn the history of ancient China. The city used to be the capital city for 13 dynasties. The famous Terracotta Warriors awaits your coming.

Family Travel in China

Your family will get diverse experience here - discover the hidden tradition, explore local food, adventure in the amusement park, night cruise, etc. Enjoy a comfortable vacation here.

Family Travel in China

The scenery in Guilin is picturesque like a traditional Chinese paintin. More importantly, you have too many things to do - rafting, boating, cruising, cycling, even the helicopter, etc.

Family Travel in China

Taking an exciting Shaoling Kung fu class, or watching an interesting Kungfu performance, will be an great memory of your kids. Also take the chance to visit the Longmen Grottoes.

Helpful Sugesstions

A great family vacation should be well organized. It is not only about visiting a new place, but more about strengthening the family bonding while learning the history, experiencing local culture, attending different family activities with your kids. It must be carefully planned, from the choosing of destinations, hotels, transportation, foods, etc. Safety comes first, and the fun comes next.

It mainly depends on the size of your family, the age of your kids and the themes your family are interested in when planning a family travel in China. The large cities like Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Hong Kong are usually favored by most families because of great condition of food, accommodation and transportation. Some other destinations are recommended for their uniqueness of landscape or culture.

If you travel with infants or young children, you should pack well before your trip, such as infant formulas, diapers, medicines, etc.

China Family Travel

Know Before Family China Adventure

It is a BIG thing to travel with kids in China. There are many concerns when planning the vacation, such as how to find family-friendly hotels, what to do if your kids get ill, how to travel safely, etc. Following are some important concerns you should know before your family trip to China.

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Food and Drink

Dinning is one of the most important parts of the journey. And in China, you and your children will have chance to enjoy the authentic Chinese food. Some of the foods are out of your imagination. But you should pay a great importance to make sure all foods are clean and nourishing.

Where to find clean and safe food?

Most Chinese foods are cooked fresh. Basic foods, such as rice, noodles, fruit, bread and eggs can be obtained anywhere you go. If you are homesick about hometown foods, you can find some western-style café and fast food in most popular tourist cities. The good news is that most Chinese restaurants have kid-friendly choices of foods. Some restaurants even offer nursing service and

facilities for kids, such as game room, room for lactation, etc. Generally, most 4-star and 5-star hotels provide both Chinese food and western buffet.

We also strongly recommend your bring a portable bottles to store purified waters or drinks because the tap water in China is not drinkable in China. You can also buy the mineral water in the supermarkets or shops.

What about the food and drink for the infants?

We recommend parents bring their own infant formula from their country, since the formula your baby likes may not sell in China, and switching brands may cause small tummies. But still there

are some international brands of infant formulasold in China, such as Nestle, Similac and Dnfamil.

You may worry about the diarrhea, which is a common problem everywhere not only in China. Our suggestion is to avoid street food.

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Accommodation

A comfortable stay is very important for family travel. Besides, the family-friendly amenities matter much more, such as supervised, planned activities, fun activities like theme parks and attractions nearby, larger or themed rooms that accommodate families, or special rates and meals for kids.

Large city or hot tourist destinations, such as Beijing, Xian, Shanghai, Guilin, Hong Kong, Chengdu, ensure family-cater accommodation. You may also have flexible choices of hotel’s rates, location, amenities, etc. The number of your children is the vital fact for choosing what kind of room to stay. If your families travel with only 1 kid, adding an extra bed is enough. But a relatively large room should be taken. If your family has 2 or

more kids, an interconnecting room which can accommodate 4 to 5 people is recommended. The actual condition may differ, so you’d better contact the hotels in advance to check the availability of interconnecting room or adding extra bed.

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Medical Issues

Travelers possibly get ill when traveling in different regions of China under different weather condition, especially the children. So it is very necessary to pack the common medicine and the emergent medicine for some spectacular condition, such as high altitude sickness.

Many pharmacy staples that are easily available in your country may be difficult to find in China. And most medicines are only labelled in Chinese. So you’d better pack your own medical kit. These are medicines recommended to pack: oral hydrating salts or electrolyte solution, an anti-colic product, anti-itch cream, hydrocortisone cream, Benadryl syrup, and children’s sunblock, eye drops, bandages, mosquito repellent, anti-fever medicine,

cough and flu medicines and any other medical essentials.

You are suggested take your kids to consult your pediatrician or travel clinic to check if your kids need to shoot extra vaccines, or pack anti-malaria pills. Furthermore, we strongly recommend shots for rabies and hepatitis A before your trip to China. Also remember to let your travel agency get the emergency contracts for major hospitals in the destinations you are going to visit if you travel with a travel agency. If you travel independently, you can search online or guide book to get the contacts for hospitals in advance.

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Transportation

Flight, train and car are major transfers for family travel in China. It depends on the destinations you are going to. Children can’t bear long-time transfer. So comfort and safety are the priority.

Flying with kids

Firstly, book both the international flights and domestic flights in China in advance. The flight schedule shouldn’t be in the late night. Secondly, pack everything you and your kids might need for the duration of your flight in your personal bag. Thirdly, get to the airport about 2 hours ahead of the flight schedule because the check-in may take longer time for family. Fourthly, arrange the pick-up before your arrival. Meeting any troubles in China, contact your travel agency to help with.

Avoid long-distance train or driving

Most destinations in China can be reached by regular train or high speed train. Don’t plan long-distance train journey if you travel with young kids, because the kids may get bored, and the facilities on the train is basic. The high speed train (bullet train) is recommended as a fresh experience, and much faster than regular trains. But you need to check whether the cities on your list can be reached by high speed train or not. So far, many popular destinations are linked by high speed train, such as Beijing, Xian, Shanghai, Guilin Chengdu, Luoyang, etc.

Also avoid long-distance driving to some remote areas, such as Tibet, Qinghai, Yunnan, etc. A baby seat is recommended during driving.

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Safety Issues

Safety comes first, next the travel. You should pay a big attention to take care of both the adults and kids.

Travel insurance

You know that traveling has the potential to be both exhilarating and risky. Even if you are fit and healthy, it is still necessary to have travel insurance for your trip. Usually, your travel agency will arrange travel insurance for every member of your family in the trip which covers:

1. Tourists' casualty (injury or death); 2. Related expenses for medical treatment and related transportation fee; 3. Expenses related to the tourists' death and repatriating the body;

4. Expenses that occur when the necessary aid has been provided to tourists.

You can also buy extra international travel insurances on your own in your country.

Don’t visit dangerous places

You should not plan your trip to dangerous places which you may risk from natural disaster, such as landslide, earthquake, and typhoon, etc. Suggestion is to check the weather or safety condition before your trip.

Travel by the safe way

After choosing the safe destinations, you should travel China safely. Don’t arrange too adventurous

activities for your kids, such as rock climbing, hiking snow peaks, drift, etc. Don’t stay outside too late in the evening.

Safe accommodation and dining

Accommodate at hotels which have obtained license from government. 4-star or 5-star hotels are recommended because of safety as well as their family-friendly amenities. Also take meals in the licensed restaurants, and get avoid of street food.

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Best time to visit

The best time for family travel in China depends on the free days you have, the places you go and other preferences. The holiday schedule of school may differ, but whenever you come to China, there are suitable places for your family to explore. While the Middle Kingdom so vast that the weathers are different in different regions. Some places, such as Jiuzhaigou Valley, Harbin Ice and Snow Amusement World, are recommended to visit in some certain months. Some historical or cultural sites are usually suitable for travel all year around. Some regions, like Tibet, Xinjiang, Gansu, are featured in extreme weather, such as cold, snow, dry or others. You’d better not cover these places on your list if you travel with infants or very young kids.

Famous destinations, such as Beijing, Xian, Guilin, Shanghai, are recommended for visiting in all seasons.

Avoid Chinese school recesses and public holidays

The school summer recess usually occurs during July and August when is also the peak season for travel in China. If possible, don’t plan your trip to China during the summer recess. The school winter recess, usually in January and February, is not the hot season for travel because of the winter weather. You can visit china because this period gathers many traditional festivals.

Public holidays, such as the New Year's Day (Jan 1-3), Labor Day (May 1-3), National Day (Oct 1-7) and Spring Festival are the “Golden Travel Weeks” for domestic travelers when most attractions are crowded by travelers. So avoid traveling during the public holidays.

Popular China Family Vacations

China Family Travel

Beijing / Xian / Shanghai

China Family Travel

BBeijing / Xian / Guilin / Shanghai

China Family Travel

Beijing / Chengdu / Yangtze Cruise / Shanghai

China Family Travel

Beijing / Luoyang / Xian / Chengdu / Guilin / Shanghai

Start planning your tailor-made holiday to China by contacting one of our specialists. Once inquired, you’ll get a response within 0.5~23.5 hours.

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The 10 Best China Travel Agencies

Whether you are visiting mainland China for the first or the umpteenth time, you will need the services of China travel agencies. You realize that this is a humongous country, with so many tourist attractions . Without a good tour agency organizing your itinerary for you, you may actually miss more than you will see. Thus, whether you are looking for a group or an independent tour of China, let one of the 10 travel agents for China that we will discuss here help you.

It is best to look online for the best travel agency. The reason for this is that you will want to plan for your travel days in advance. From making accommodation arrangements to booking flights , trains and buses to various destinations, a travel agent will literally do all the footwork for you.

You will enjoy yourself much better in a new country when you have someone taking care of the details of the itinerary for you.

1.  Trip.Com

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Hop onto the homepage of Trip.Com and you will see that there is always a good deal going down. Trip.com brings you travel packages to China from many dealers. One thing that many travelers to China appreciate on this website is that it is a one-stop for everything that you would need to travel to China.

From flights, plane tickets, hotels, car rentals  and so on, any tenet of traveling that you can think about is offered on this website. That they bring deals from many companies ensures that they bring some of the most competitive deals around.

We can say this is one of the best China travel companies because of their fantastic search engine. Just click one tab and it will bring you almost all the information that you need. For example, if you click the hotels tab, it will bring you a selection of major cities.

You can choose the city that you are traveling to, choose the date of travel on the calendar and the number of people that you will be traveling with. Once you press the search button, you will be brought all the available hotels, their ratings and their prices. The same also happens when booking train and flight tickets.

They also have a few resources that you may find very helpful. For example, you should know about their cancellation policy, how you can choose the right train type and seat.

2. Travel China Guide

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You can book train tickets through this company to any part of China. There is no one time when you will regret using them. If you check the reviews left by customers who have used this company on Tripadvisor, you will understand why it is one of the top China travel websites.

But even without reading reviews left by other users, you can check the website and see for yourself. First, it is so easy to navigate. You will find everything that you need on the homepage.

For China tours, you will most likely want to go to the tab marked China Tours. There, you will find everything about traveling to China. However, there is also information about traveling to other parts of Asia.

If you want to book flights or trains, you can just go to the tabs indicated as so. You will see all the trains heading to the major cities in China, dates and times of departure and arrival.

If you would like to join a small group tour and save money, Travel China Guide brings you that information. You will also find information regarding independent tours if you would like to arrange for one.

When reviews say that Travel China Guide is the one stop center for travel in China, it is because every word about that is true.

3. China Highlights

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When you get to China or to any other country for the first time, you want to catch the highlights first. Granted, you will never see everything on the first trip but your hunger can be sated a bit if you see the highlights first. That is why the China Highlights is the best China Travel Agency for you, as they have experience spanning more than 20 years, and they know what every visitor should see in China.

Right there on the home page, you will see the most popular destination in China. No guesswork …  just go right into the heart of the matter here! But that is not all, because the website also has some very helpful articles about the best time of the year to visit different places in China.

They make many promises, as you will no doubt see when you get on the homepage, and we know that promises make travelers wary. However, what they say makes a lot of sense. For example, they say that they will take you to restaurants that are off the beaten path so that you can have an authentic Chinese experience. This means that you will not be tossed into one of the big hotels that remind you of home.

With money back guarantee for their packages, well, this is a good travel company. Besides, they have won several awards, including the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence.

china youth travel

From 1998, CITS has been giving both first and umpteenth time travelers to China an unparalleled experience in choosing the best tour packages, flights and the best sights. You will love their organization on the homepage. You can choose the kind of tour that you want to take easily.

First, they have a section for overall top ten tours in China, then they have a section of top tours in different cities as well as the world heritage sites. Since there are thousands of attractions in China, it is better to see the biggest ones on the first visit if you will stay only a short time. CITS makes it possible to see these and many more.

Sometimes, it is hard to find English speaking tour guides. While there are many who speak English, most of it is not comprehensive to westerners. All the guides that you will find on CITS speak English very well. When you want a 5-star tour arranged for you, you will be booked into the best hotels, restaurants, flights and trains.

Whether you want a group tour or independent tour, this travel agency will prepare everything for you. Right off their homepage, you will see their top tours so that you can choose what you want without wasting your time.

The best thing however is that you will get the opportunity to create a customized tour plan for yourself, down to the smallest detail.

5. China Odyssey Tours

china youth travel

Many things make China Odyssey Tours the best of many China travel websites. One of them is that this is the one-stop-center for everything that you need to know about traveling to China. When you get to their website, you will see just what we mean.

They are not like other travel agencies that try to sell you a package even when all that you are looking for is information. This company educates you on many fronts first, and then they help you choose the best package to meet your travel needs.

Get a tailor-made tour package, just for you. However, if you are for group tours, those too can be arranged for you. They will arrange your China travel to the last and smallest detail, and when you leave, you will have an authentic Chinese experience.

China Odyssey Tours offers different types of tour packages. Tour lengths are arranged from two days onward. Whether you have kids, are traveling alone or you are a senior, there is a tour package for you. You just have to tell one of the representatives what you need and they will customize a package for you.

One of the most popular tour packages from China Odyssey is the classic sightseeing one. This is customized with handpicked hotels, attractions and flexible schedules. A classic sightseeing tour is what you need to give you an authentic China experience.  

All inquiries via email are replied to within 24 hours.

6. Tour Beijing

china youth travel

Based in the city of Beijing, you can say that this travel agency is located right where you would love to start your tour of China. Whether you are traveling to China in spring, summer, winter or fall, these people can organize a good, customized tour package for you.

Whether you want to have a private tour in china, or you would be willing to join a small group, there are all types of packages. You may also choose to tour by coach, by train or even by car. Whatever your preference is, this China travel agency has everything that you may need.

With resources such as China top 10 places to guide you, Shanghai top places , Xian top places and other similar articles, you can choose what you need to include in your touring itinerary from the word go. Tour Beijing is not just a travel agency, but it also informs travelers on the attractions that most people miss when they visit China.

Sometimes, you just want to work with a credible our operator who will arrange your tour from scratch to completion. This means having them arrange for everything including airport transfer, dining, and traveling to various destinations.

It is very easy to book a China tour online with this website. All that you need to do is choose a tour, get a quote for the tour, make adjustments if any to the tour and once you are satisfied, just pay. Methods of payment include Alipay, PayPal, MasterCard, Visa, American Express and others.

7. Top China Travel

china youth travel

If this is your first time traveling to China, you want a tour itinerary that contains at least everything. However, you also want to see the most important things first. You will need a good China travel agency to help you create a proper itinerary. Whatever you do, the itinerary must include a cultural tour, for that is the only thing that is going to give you a firsthand impression of China.

This travel service has been recommended five years in a row by TripAdvisor. It is easy to see why. They reply to all inquiries within 24 hours, they customize China inbound travel packages to meet different needs. When you contract them to arrange your China tour for you, they will arrange for airport transfer, dining, hotels, flights, trains and even car hire if you need one.

Most of the time, Top China Travel offers discounts to customers. For example, you may find that an 11 day tour is being offered on a discount. The price reduces, but the package contents remains the same. However, even without a discount, you will still want to have Top China Travel arrange the our for you.

On their website, you will find more information about China, weather, different tour packages and many more, anything to get you started.

8. Into China Travel

china youth travel

With China attracting millions of visitors from other countries each year, with so many China Travel websites blooming up everywhere, it can be hard to choose the best one to arrange your tour for you. If you are traveling to China, you would like someone else to take the burden of putting the itinerary together while you take care of your travel arrangements.

This is where the Into China Travel company comes in. They will organise your tour for you. Whether you are only going to China for a short time or you would like to take more than a few weeks, they will have the right package ready, something that will enable you to see everything important.

Into China Travel will arrange Sichuan Tours, Yunnan, Tibet, Silk Road and Great Wall tours for you. Simply put, every important place in China, every place that is worth a visit is included in your itinerary.

In the FAQ section of the website, you will find that almost all of your questions have been anticipated and answered. You will also see the prices per person, price when you want to tour China in a group of two, three, four, five or even more. You will find that group rates are more affordable than personal rates.

You will also see the cancellation policy and the percentages charged for that. That way, you need to be very sure when cancelling so that you do not wait until the last day, in which case you would forfeit all the money that you had paid.

9. China Tour

china youth travel

There are different ways to tour China. It can be by river cruises, car tours, coach tours and even train tours. China is a vast country with thousands of things to see, some of them in the major cities and some hidden far away in the country. This is why you need the China Tour company to arrange a good itinerary for you, which will include the best of everything.

Straight from the homepage, they let you see the most popular tours so that you can choose what you want. From 8-day tours for people who are traveling in China for just a few days, to 15 tour days, there is something for everyone on this company.

Train booking in China can be quite a quagmire, and is always confusing for many foreigners. However, the best China travel websites always help you out. China Tour is going to help you with all train as well as flight bookings .

All guided tours are conducted by English speaking guides. Thus, you do not have to worry about communication barrier, although it is a good idea to know several words of greeting in the most popular languages, don’t fret if you cannot speak any local dialect.

Contrary to what many people think, traveling to China through a travel agency is actually more beneficial than doing all the leg work. Let China Tour do the hard job for you while you prepare to travel.

10. China Discovery

china youth travel

Would you like to discover China by high speed train, car, bus or through river cruises? Well, you are in good hands if you will let China Discovery arrange the itinerary for you. One thing that you will love about the representatives of this website is that they know what you want. You just want to catch all the highlights of the country in the time that you have dedicated to your travels.

When you travel to China, always start with the most popular places. For example, this China Travel agency will advise you to start your tour with the popular gateway cities and then take up other places.

All tours are customized to meet all of your needs. While we all love traveling to China, the truth is that we all have different travel needs. China travel companies can meet our specific needs and China Discovery offers such packages. You will get this through the one-on-one service offered by the pleasant representatives.

If you want value for money, China Discovery will give it to you. You can email them, they reply in less than 24 hours.

China is vast and it has so many places for you to see. That is why you need the best China travel companies to help you out. The ten we have reviewed here give the best value for money all the time, as you can see from reviews left by other people who have used them. Always ask for a customized tour if you can afford it because it allows you to handpick your own places, as compared to a group tour, which may not have enough flexibility.

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China’s Travel Economy Is Slowly Coming Back. Here’s Where It Stands.

Over a year after China opened its borders following the pandemic, international trips are still lagging, although domestic travel is more popular.

  • Share full article

People walking inside an airport.

By Tiffany May

Reporting from Hong Kong

Since China reopened its borders in 2023 after three years of Covid isolation, domestic travel has thrived and high-speed rail has grown increasingly popular. But international trips in and out of the country are lagging, and flight capacity is still just two-thirds of prepandemic levels.

The economic stakes are high. Before the pandemic, Chinese travelers were the world’s biggest spenders, accounting for 20 percent of global tourism spending, according to the United Nations World Tourism Organization.

In the past year, the Chinese authorities have tried to spur more inbound travel. Among the changes: China has waived travel visas or agreed to extend the length of visa-free travel for visitors from eight countries, including Germany and France.

The main factor holding back international travel by Chinese will continue to be China’s economy. Growth has bounced back from the pandemic, but the weight of a severe real estate downturn has dampened consumer spending and confidence inside China. And global geopolitical tensions remain a wild card. China is engaged in trade disputes with the United States and Europe, home to many major multinational companies. As they think twice about their business in China, travel suffers.

Here’s what to know about the state of China’s travel economy.

Travel to China ground nearly to a halt in the pandemic. It won’t fully recover until 2025.

Throughout the pandemic, China enforced some of the strictest travel rules in the world. Overseas travelers who managed to enter the country sometimes had to quarantine at their own expense for as long as two months.

As of December, international flight capacity — essentially the number of available seats on flights coming from and going to China — was only 62 percent of what it was in December 2019, according to OAG, a flight data analytics firm. But domestic travel has picked up: Over the 3-day weekend at the end of last month, the number of those fliers exceeded prepandemic levels by nearly 10 percent.

At the start of last year, there were only about 500 international flights every week in China, according to the Civil Aviation Administration of China, the aviation regulator. Now there are about 4,600, and that number is expected to increase to 6,000 by the end of the year — about 80 percent of prepandemic levels.

A big test will come next month during the spring festival around the Lunar New Year, typically a heavy travel period when millions of workers travel to their hometowns. Chinese airlines will schedule 2,500 additional international flights to accommodate spring festival visits, China’s aviation regulator said last week.

China’s transport officials said they expected 480 million rail trips to be made during a 40-day travel surge around the spring festival in the weeks before and after the Lunar New Year, a nearly 40 percent increase from last year.

High-speed rail has become a more popular way to travel within the country. China State Railway Group, the national rail operator, said rail trips exceeded 20 million at the start of the Golden Week holiday in October, a high, and the average daily number of passenger trips throughout the year exceeded 10 million.

Most analysts said they believed that the full recovery of international travel wouldn’t happen until 2025.

In a January research note, economists at Nomura, a Japanese bank, said the pace of the sector’s recovery would largely be determined by how much Chinese travelers were willing to spend. Pandemic-era problems like delays in issuing visas and passports that lasted through 2023 have been addressed.

“While supply-side constraints eased, the demand-side drag is now starting to kick in, and sizable headwinds remain for China’s outbound tourism recovery in 2024 and possibly 2025,” the Nomura economists wrote.

Applying for a visa and visiting China are a bit less complicated.

In December, China started allowing visitors from France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Malaysia and the Netherlands to travel for 15 days without visas, a change it said would last through November 2024. China’s National Immigration Administration said 147,000 visas had been granted in the first six and a half weeks of the program. China also reached agreements to make visa-free travel more accessible for tourists from Thailand and Singapore.

For Americans, visa applicants will no longer need to submit documents such as hotel booking records, an itinerary or an invitation letter. The authorities have also cut all visa application fees by 25 percent until the end of the year.

It has also gotten easier for foreigners to pay for things when visiting China. Last July, the main payment platforms, WeChat Pay and AliPay, said they would support foreign credit cards and allow visitors to pay like locals. China has moved away from paper money and coins , a trend that accelerated during the pandemic.

Flights between China and the United States have been only slowly restored. Before the pandemic, there were more than 300 flights every week between the two countries. That number was 36 a week in September and has gradually increased. In November, the countries agreed to increase flights to 70 a week.

Geopolitical tensions and reluctant Chinese travelers could derail the sector’s recovery.

The fraught Chinese-U.S. relationship will continue to lurk in the background of international travel to China.

The U.S. State Department maintains a “Level 3” travel alert on China, warning Americans to “reconsider travel” to the country because of “the risk of wrongful detentions,” among other reasons.

China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has its own travel notice, warning that travelers to the United States have been “harassed and interrogated” at the border with “various excuses,” and that Chinese citizens have been arbitrarily arrested and prosecuted.

The changing tastes and expendable income of Chinese travelers could shape how the travel economy’s recovery plays out.

“As Chinese households become more price-sensitive and rational, domestic tourism is more preferred, given that it usually takes less time and money,” said Ying Zhang of the Economist Intelligence Unit, a research business.

Tiffany May is a reporter based in Hong Kong, covering the politics, business and culture of the city and the broader region. More about Tiffany May

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Why China’s young travellers are sleeping at Hai Di Lao

Young people sleeping at Hai Di Lao to save money on accommodation. (Internet)

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Clocking two sleepless nights and 30,000 daily steps to cover more than ten locations in a single day — if one had no idea, this travel itinerary could easily be mistaken as some sort of special forces training.

The term “special forces travellers” (旅游特种兵) has gone viral on China’s social media, referring to a travel style recently popular among young people whereby they try to spend the least amount of money to cover the most locations in the shortest time possible, challenging their physical limits like special forces troops.

Why are young people in China choosing to travel in this manner? Are they just following the crowd, or are there other reasons behind it?

'Military-style' tourism

On 24 March, a female student studying in Anhui province went to Beijing to meet her friend, and in just two days over the weekend, they managed to visit tourist attractions such as Nanluoguxiang, Drum Tower, Forbidden City, Yonghe Temple, Tiananmen Square, Summer Palace, Beihai Park and Temple of Heaven. To save time and money, the female student spent the night on the train on Friday, and the pair stayed up all night on Saturday to wait for the flag-raising ceremony at Tiananmen Square.

xiaohongshu

Images of the female student’s travel itinerary drew the attention of netizens on Douyin. Netizens in Beijing said that they themselves had never been to so many places, and one even commented that “this is not tourism, it’s an ironman triathlon”.

... young people have shared on social media platforms like Xiaohongshu their experiences of sleeping in restaurants including Hai Di Lao and McDonald’s...

There are many other young people like the female student, who go to the extreme in saving time and money. The astonishing itineraries and budgets they post online has earned them the moniker of “special forces travellers”.

itinerary

These “special forces” have many solutions to tackle the major cost of accommodation. Late last month, a woman touring Shenzhen wrote a post claiming that she stayed overnight in a private room for free at a Hai Di Lao hotpot restaurant. Many netizens questioned if she was abusing the restaurant’s services, but in fact, young people have shared on social media platforms like Xiaohongshu their experiences of sleeping in restaurants including Hai Di Lao and McDonald’s, while some also choose to spend the night in places like cheap bathhouses and internet cafes.

Some young travellers also choose to spend the night on the train, even selecting the cheapest hard seats instead of a sleeper berth. A netizen shared a scene on a night train from Zhengzhou to Xi’an, where almost all the passengers were college students on a weekend getaway.

train

Special forces travel has become a widespread phenomenon among young people in China. According to data from ly.com, during the recent Qingming Festival holiday, 62% of post-2000s generation travellers took overnight transportation to reach their destination, while 30% of this group visited more than four tourist spots in a single day. The most popular destinations are cities with a relatively high concentration of tourist attractions and convenient public transportation, such as Beijing, Chongqing, Changsha, Shanghai and Nanjing.

"I don’t get what these people are playing at, do they just want a photo at the entrance?” — Chinese netizen

Superficial experience or a good use of time?

Netizens have mixed views on these special forces travellers. Some criticise such superficial travel as pointless. “If you’re serious about it, the Palace Museum alone would take a few days. I don’t get what these people are playing at, do they just want a photo at the entrance?” 

Others note that after the “special forces” trend came up, human traffic at scenic spots and on transportation has significantly increased, affecting the travel experience of other tourists, while those who spend the night in restaurants and stations also leave a bad impression. Some are worried about these travellers’ health: “Climbing Mount Tai after two sleepless days, what if something happens?”

However, some netizens believe that people shouldn’t be too harsh on how young people choose to travel. “Youths are meant to spread their wings. What’s wrong with going on a trip of a lifetime?” 

“... my friend and I didn’t feel tired, because the joy of going out and seeing the world conquered the fatigue.”

The female student mentioned above who went to Beijing refuted the criticism of her superficial tourism in an interview with Ran News. She said, “Although the trip was rushed, we did a lot of research and took in the significance of each attraction. Many people say that ‘special forces-style’ travel is too tiring, but my friend and I didn’t feel tired, because the joy of going out and seeing the world conquered the fatigue.”

train station

In response, some places have even launched travel packages to meet the needs of these young people. Shandong province has launched a Qilu high-speed rail tour package at 399 RMB (US$58), including routes connecting many scenic spots such as Baotu Spring, Mount Tai, Confucius Temple in Qufu, and the beaches in Qingdao.

Zibo city, which has recently become popular on social media for its barbecue food, launched a dedicated high-speed train for tourists to travel from Jinan to Zibo in as little as 40 minutes, to taste the city’s specialty barbecue.

A need to see the world?

Youths travelling on a tight budget is commonplace, while affordable tours with packed itineraries are also a norm in the tourism industry. But special forces travel only became popular recently, for a variety of reasons.

... a trip that was supposed to be a memorable experience turned into a mission that must be completed in the shortest time, and even a form of social capital that could boost one’s image.

Nowadays, Chinese youths heavily depend on social media for travel-related information, with bucket list destinations and food places garnering attention on platforms such as Xiaohongshu and Douyin. Many people only visit these places after looking at the photographs of others. They would take their own snaps and share them online, driving more people to do the same.

In this process, the emphasis is inevitably placed on “putting on a show” instead of truly “experiencing the journey”. Hence, a trip that was supposed to be a memorable experience turned into a mission that must be completed in the shortest time, and even a form of social capital that could boost one’s image.

However, not all special forces travellers are superficial, as the need to travel is real and far greater than ever before. During the three-year-long Covid-19 pandemic, China adopted prolonged stringent anti-Covid measures, with lockdowns and mass testing severely affecting people’s movement, especially the younger generation who are passionate about seeing the world.

However, the reality is cruel — the world is big but their wallet is empty.

university

As a saying on the Chinese internet goes, “The pandemic took away three of the four years of university.” During lockdowns, students couldn’t even leave the school, let alone go for a trip. Thus, after the pandemic ended, youths were the most desperate to go on revenge trips to make up for their “lost youth”.

On a tight budget

However, the reality is cruel — the world is big but their wallet is empty. Since the outbreak of the pandemic, China’s consumer appetite for spending has weakened and more people are choosing to save rather than spend. Data released by the People’s Bank of China showed that China’s new RMB deposits in 2022 totalled 26.26 trillion RMB, an increase of 6.59 trillion RMB year-on-year.

The China Youth Daily reported that in 2021, a survey of 20,000 respondents showed that young people aged 18 to 34 are paying more attention to their retirement pension savings, with savings rates reaching a record high since 2018. Among them, 76% of youths said they were doing so to increase their emergency savings.

While it is normal for youths to travel on a tight budget, Chinese youths have additional time pressure when compared with their peers in developed countries who can use a gap year to do the same. Graduates in China are busy job hunting while undergraduates are taking examinations or finding internships during their school breaks.

Data from China’s National Bureau of Statistics showed that in February this year, the surveyed urban unemployment rate reached 5.6%, among which unemployment among those aged 16 to 24 reached 18.1%. China’s Ministry of Education said that a record  11.58 million students in China are expected to graduate from higher education institutions this year, an increase of 820,000 year-on-year.

People attend a job fair in Chongqing, China, on 11 April 2023. (AFP)

Director of the China Institute for Employment Research Zeng Xiangquan told Caijing magazine that the issue with the supply and demand structure of the job market has not been resolved. In addition, students who delayed employment or failed to enter graduate school in 2022 or even 2021 are also set to enter the workforce, meaning that the employment pressure on Chinese college students will remain high this year.

Caught between ideals and reality

Chinese youths have a strong desire to travel but generally lack time and money. Therefore, it is unsurprising to see them pushing the limits to become special forces travellers, which reflects their yearning to find some harmony between ideals and reality. Refusing to give up on travelling and seeing the world, they are forced to spend every penny wisely.

This phenomenon also reflects the state of Chinese society after the pandemic — under immense economic pressure, even if people have become more willing to spend, their spending power may still be lagging behind. Will this lead to changes in various other sectors, besides tourism? This is something to observe in the near future.

This article was first published in Lianhe Zaobao as “中国年轻人为何要当“旅游特种兵”?” .

Related: More Chinese youths visiting temples to seek solace | Solving China’s soaring youth unemployment | China’s youths are feeling the pressure from low wages | Why Chinese youths are not spending | Depression among China's college students reveals anxieties about jobs and Covid

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China Expects Record 9 Billion Trips During Lunar New Year Travel Rush

Rashaad Jorden , Skift

January 26th, 2024 at 11:17 AM EST

Although China still has a way to go to make a complete recovery from the pandemic, the projected boom in Lunar New Year trips is a welcome sign for the travel industry worldwide.

Rashaad Jorden

Chinese travelers are projected to make a record 9 billion domestic trips during the 40-day Lunar New Year period starting Friday, according to state-run news agency Xinhua. 

That figure would roughly double the roughly 4.7 billion trips made during last year’s Lunar New Year travel period, which occurred shortly after Beijing significantly eased the country’s strict Covid policies .

Chinese Vice Transport Minister Li Yang said that 7.2 billion trips during this year’s busy travel period would be made by car . As for train travel, China’s railway system is expected to see 480 million passenger trips during the Lunar New Year travel period, a 38% jump from last year and a 18% increase from 2019. Xinhua reported that Chinese officials projected roughly 10.6 million train trips would take place on Friday.

Air travel during this year’s holiday period is also expected to subtantially increase. China’s aviation regulator forecasts roughly 80 million trips to be made by air, a 9.8% jump from 2019. In addition, Shanghai’s two airports expect passenger traffic to increase 57.6% from last year while Beijing’s airports will see a more than 60% jump.

Outbound travel from China is also projected to increase from last year as Chinese airlines have added more than 2,500 international flights to their schedules for the Lunar New Year travel period. Trip.com Group recently said China’s outbound travel bookings for this Lunar New Year were more than 10 times higher than in 2023 , with Thailand, Japan, and South Korea emerging as the most popular destinations for Chinese travelers.

The Daily Newsletter

Our daily coverage of the global travel industry. Written by editors and analysts from across Skift’s brands.

Have a confidential tip for Skift? Get in touch

Tags: china , chinese tourism , Chinese tourists , lunar new year

Photo credit: Beijing and other Chinese cities are expected to be crowded during China's busiest travel period. Shreyans Bhansali / Flickr

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Tu Lei co-leads the Global Times biz desk. She also covers topics on civil aviation and logistics.

Passengers are queuing to board a train at Hangzhou South Railway Station on January 17, 2024. Photo: VCG

Passengers are queuing to board a train at Hangzhou South Railway Station on January 17, 2024. Photo: VCG

china youth travel

In the midst of the winter chill, the New Year's Day holiday is ticking down. Despite temperatures plummeting ...

china youth travel

China posted a GDP growth of 5.2 percent for 2023 on Wednesday, successfully meeting last year’s annual target ...

china youth travel

China kicks off Spring Festival travel rush with 9 bln trips expected

Source: Xinhua

Editor: huaxia

2024-01-26 11:22:32

china youth travel

An aerial drone photo taken on Jan. 26, 2024 shows bullet trains at a maintenance base in Nanchang, east China's Jiangxi Province. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected. (Xinhua/Wan Xiang)

BEIJING, Jan. 26 (Xinhua) -- China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

An estimated 9 billion passenger trips are likely to be made during the 2024 travel rush period, according to the country's transport ministry.

Of the total, 7.2 billion trips or about 80 percent will be made by self-driving, while 1.8 billion trips will be made via railways, highways, waterways, and civil aviation, the ministry said.

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush.

The 40-day travel surge, also known as "chunyun," will see hundreds of millions of people return home and reunite with their friends and families.

This year's Lunar New Year runs from Feb. 10 to 17, one day longer than in previous years. The extended holiday will put even more pressure on the nation's transport system, as unleashed pent-up demand for family reunions overlaps with surging travel demand. ■

china youth travel

An aerial drone photo taken on Jan. 26, 2024 shows bullet trains at a maintenance base in Changsha, central China's Hunan Province. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Xinhua/Chen Sihan)

china youth travel

A mechanic checks a bullet train at a maintenance base in Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province, Jan. 26, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Xinhua/Wu Zhizun)

china youth travel

An aerial drone photo taken on Jan. 26, 2024 shows bullet trains at a maintenance base in Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

china youth travel

This photo taken on Jan. 26, 2024 shows bullet trains at a maintenance base in Guangzhou, south China's Guangdong Province. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Xinhua/Deng Hua)

china youth travel

A mechanic checks a bullet train at a maintenance base in Changsha, central China's Hunan Province, Jan. 25, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

china youth travel

An aerial drone photo taken on Jan. 26, 2024 shows bullet trains at a maintenance base in Fuzhou, southeast China's Fujian Province. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Xinhua/Zhou Yi)

china youth travel

This photo taken on Jan. 26, 2024 shows bullet trains at a maintenance base in Changsha, central China's Hunan Province. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Xinhua/Chen Zhenhai)

china youth travel

A stitched panoramic aerial photo shows bullet trains at a maintenance base in Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province, Jan. 26, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

china youth travel

An aerial drone photo taken on Jan. 26, 2024 shows bullet trains at a maintenance base in Nanchang, east China's Jiangxi Province. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Xinhua/Wan Xiang)

china youth travel

A robot checks a bullet train at a maintenance base in Changsha, central China's Hunan Province, Jan. 25, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

china youth travel

A staff member works at a bullet train maintenance base in Changsha, central China's Hunan Province, Jan. 26, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

china youth travel

A mechanic checks a bullet train at a maintenance base in Changsha, central China's Hunan Province, Jan. 26, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

china youth travel

Mechanics work at a bullet train maintenance base in Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province, Jan. 25, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Xinhua/Du Zixuan)

china youth travel

A mechanic checks a bullet train at a maintenance base in Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province, Jan. 25, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

china youth travel

An aerial drone photo taken on Jan. 26, 2024 shows bullet trains at a maintenance base in Guangzhou, south China's Guangdong Province. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

china youth travel

Mechanics check a bullet train at a maintenance base in Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province, Jan. 25, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

china youth travel

A girl and her father, who are about to take a train to their home in central China's Hubei Province, walks at Beijing West Railway Station in Beijing, capital of China, Jan. 26, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Xinhua/Ju Huanzong)

china youth travel

Passengers are seen on a platform at Harbin Railway Station in Harbin, northeast China's Heilongjiang Province, Jan. 26, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Xinhua/Zhang Tao)

china youth travel

A drone photo taken on Jan. 26, 2024 shows passengers waiting for ticket check at Hefei South Railway Station in Hefei, east China's Anhui Province. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Xinhua/Zhou Mu)

china youth travel

Passengers board a train at Hefei South Railway Station in Hefei, east China's Anhui Province, Jan. 26, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

china youth travel

Passengers are seen at Beijing West Railway Station in Beijing, capital of China, on Jan. 26, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Xinhua/Ren Chao)

china youth travel

Passengers take a bullet train at Kunming South Railway Station in Kunming, southwest China's Yunnan Province on Jan. 26, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Photo by Zhang Zhengju/Xinhua)

china youth travel

An aerial drone photo taken on Jan. 26, 2024 shows bullet trains at a maintenance base in Kunming, southwest China's Yunnan Province. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

china youth travel

An aerial drone photo taken on Jan. 26, 2024 shows bullet trains at a maintenance base in Nanjing, east China's Jiangsu Province. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Photo by Fang Dongxu/Xinhua)

china youth travel

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Xinhua/Zhang Chenlin)

china youth travel

Passengers are seen at Shenzhen North Railway Station in Shenzhen, south China's Guangdong Province, Jan. 26, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Xinhua/Liang Xu)

china youth travel

Passengers are seen on a bullet train bound for Lianyungang, east China's Jiangsu Province, at Shenzhen North Railway Station in Shenzhen, south China's Guangdong Province, Jan. 26, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

china youth travel

Passengers line up for ticket check at Xuzhou East Railway Station in Xuzhou, east China's Jiangsu Province, Jan. 26, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Photo by Liu Jianhua/Xinhua)

china youth travel

A staff member puts up Spring Festival decorations at a waiting hall of Beijing West Railway Station in Beijing, capital of China, on Jan. 26, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

china youth travel

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Photo by Yang Suping/Xinhua)

china youth travel

Passengers are seen at the waiting hall of Wuhan Railway Station in Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province, Jan. 26, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

china youth travel

A staff member watches a train depart on the platform at Daozhou Railway Station in Yongzhou, central China's Hunan Province, Jan. 26, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

China's railway operator on Friday said the country's railways are expected to handle 480 million passengers during this travel season, with an average of 12 million trips daily, an increase of 37.9 percent compared with the previous year. About 10.6 million train trips are expected to be made on Friday, the first day of the travel rush. (Photo by Jiang Keqing/Xinhua)

china youth travel

Passengers on board a train wait to depart at Daozhou Railway Station in Yongzhou, central China's Hunan Province, Jan. 26, 2024. China officially ushered in its largest annual population migration on Friday, 15 days ahead of the Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year, with record-breaking journey numbers expected.

china youth travel

China Kicks off Lunar New Year Travel Rush, Expects Record 9 Billion Trips

Reuters

FILE PHOTO: Passengers wait to enter a subway outside Beijing Railway Station, after arriving by train during the Chinese Lunar New Year travel rush as the annual Spring Festival holidays ended in Beijing, China February 11, 2019. REUTERS/Jason Lee/File Photo

BEIJING (Reuters) - China on Friday kicked off its busiest annual period of mass migration with a record 9 billion domestic trips expected to be made during a 40-day travel rush around the Lunar New Year holidays, state media predicted.

That would be nearly double the 4.7 billion trips made during the so-called Spring Festival travel rush in 2023 when ultra-strict COVID-19 restrictions were abolished.

Millions of people will travel back to their home towns to reunite with families for the Lunar New Year, which falls on Feb. 10 this year, in the world's largest mass migration each year.

About 80% of the 9 billion trips will be self-driving road trips, also a record, with the rest by rail, air, and water, Chinese state television CCTV reported.

Nearly 11 million train trips, the main mode of transportation in China, are expected on Friday. A total of 480 million trips will be made nationwide during the 40-day period, a 38% jump from 2023 and up 17% from 2019 before the pandemic.

Both railway travel and air travel skyrocketed on the first day of this year's rush. Passengers struggled to get train tickets, even though China is home to the world's largest high-speed network.

Miranda Guo, a 25-year-old cartoonist from a Hangzhou-based Chinese technology firm, was lucky to have secured a seat on a bullet train to Jinan. But that was only after forking out an additional 60 yuan, 13% of the ticket price, on an "accelerator package" offered by third-party booking apps.

"I think it's hard to buy a ticket this year, with almost all my colleagues failing to get tickets. Many of them are still on waiting lists," Guo said.

Air passenger trips are estimated to reach 2 million on Friday, CCTV reported. During this year's travel rush, the number of trips made by air are expected to surge to 80 million, per China's aviation regulator, up 9.8% from 2019.

Airports in China's biggest cities Beijing and Shanghai will brace for heavy crowds.

Shanghai's two airports Pudong and Hongqiao expect passenger traffic to surge 57.6% on year in the 40-day period while Beijing's airports will see a more than 60% jump.

Overseas travel will also rise during the travel peak.

China's aviation authorities have arranged more than 2,500 additional international flights to Asian destinations including Southeast Asia, Japan, and South Korea.

Additional railway and flights are also arranged for popular domestic tourism cities including Harbin in northeast China and Sanya, a popular tropical destination in the south.

(Reporting by Albee Zhang, Qiaoyi Li and Ryan Woo; Editing by Raju Gopalakrishnan)

Copyright 2024 Thomson Reuters .

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