Effective immediately, China resumes inbound group tours

Hu Min
China's Ministry of Culture and Tourism announced the resumption of foreign group tours and inbound travel packages. The move comes amid greater international tourism exchange.
Hu Min

Travel agencies and online travel operators in China have been given a green light to resume inbound group tours of foreigners and sales of air tickets plus hotel packages, according to a notification released by China's Ministry of Culture and Tourism on Friday evening.

According to the notice, domestic travel agencies and online travel operators are required to make proper route designs and travel arrangements with their counterparts overseas, and ensure pandemic prevention and control measures.

Travel operators should follow regulations on the management of group tours and improve their services for inbound tourists, according to the notice.

Trips surge

Shanghai-based online travel operator Trip.com said searches of its inbound air tickets surged over 200 percent within 30 minutes following the announcement.

The orders involving inbound tourism soared 46 percent between January and March from the same period last year, with reservation of inbound air tickets growing 168 percent with a 31 percent price cut on average.

The bookings of hotels involving inbound travel increased 27 percent in the three months.

"The relaxation of inbound tourist policies will further promote recovery of China's tourism market, and travel operators will step up development of inbound tourist products," said Shen Jiani, a senior researcher with the travel website.

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