China expects record air traffic volume between October 1 and 8, 2020, the upcoming holiday week. Over 15 million domestic flight trips will be made, 10% increase in comparison with the same period in 2019.
The prediction is made by air travel platform Qunar, based on their booking data. Chinese media reports that the increase signifies the recovery of the civil aviation industry, and speculates that several factors likely contributed to that.
According to Chinese state newspaper the Global Times, a change in tourism policies, including lucrative discounts and marketing campaigns, are one of them. The drop in foreign travel, caused by international restrictions, also played the part: it reoriented travelers who would otherwise choose to spend holidays abroad.
“Ticket price is at a low level due to discounts amid oversupply,” the South China Morning Post quotes Lin Zhije, an expert at Aviation Think Tank. Based on pre-bookings, average domestic airfares declined 10%, according to the newspaper.
Qunar also claims that discounts prompted early booking craze, as usually the peak of ticket bookings for October holidays starts after September 20. In 2020, some popular routes were already sold out one week earlier.
October 1 is National Day of the People’s Republic of China, which celebrates the establishment of the communist Chinese state. The day is followed by a six-day official holiday, called the “golden week”.