Wanderlust hits Chinese

Updated: 2015-03-02 07:03

By Yang Feiyue(China Daily)

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Wanderlust hits Chinese

Hainan Island is a popular destination. [Photo/China Daily]

More people from the mainland are traveling abroad with their families during the Lunar New Year break. Yang Feiyue reports.

A strong renmenbi and relaxed visa policies in some countries encouraged more Chinese to spend their Spring Festival holiday abroad this year, according to a report from the China National Tourism Administration.

A total of 5.18 million Chinese (not including people from Hong Kong and Macao) left the country on vacation from Feb 18 to 24, up approximately 10 percent compared with the figure for the same period last year, the report said.

Japan, South Korea, Thailand and Southeast Asian islands remained popular destinations, thanks to their proximity to China, while long-haul trips to Australia and the United States also saw a significant growth in the number of Chinese tourists during the festival, the report added.

"Spring Festival is one of the two weeklong holidays for most Chinese, who are more likely to use the opportunity to take their families abroad for an exotic experience," says Jiang Yiyi, director of the Beijing-based think tank International Tourism Development Institute. The other weeklong holiday surrounds National Day in October.

An increasing number of countries have rolled out the red carpet for Chinese tourists. The Sydney Opera House used the color red for decorations on the eve of Spring Festival, so that Chinese tourists could feel elements of the celebration abroad, Jiang adds.

Some countries staged special programs to cater to the needs of Chinese tourists, according to the report.

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