People visit the Yuyuan Garden during the week-long National Day holiday in Shanghai, Oct 2, 2021. [Photo/Xinhua]
The weeklong National Day holiday saw a slight drop in passenger trips and a surge in parcels compared with last year and 2019, operators said on Friday.
From Oct 1 to 7, the civil aviation industry handled nearly 9.3 million passenger trips, an average of 1.33 million per day, dropping 19.6 percent compared with last year according to the Civil Aviation Administration of China.
More than 93 percent of planes arrived on time. Popular departure cities were Guangzhou and Shenzhen in Guangdong province, Chengdu in Sichuan province, as well as Beijing, Chongqing and Shanghai. Popular destinations included Chengdu, Chongqing, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Xi'an in Shaanxi province.
A total of 90,663 flights were handled, 12,952 per day, dropping 11.27 percent compared with last year.
Due to COVID-19 cases recently emerging in Harbin, Heilongjiang province and Xiamen, Fujian province, most tourism cities saw a slight decrease in ticket bookings compared with last year, the administration said.
The national railway network handled 110 million passenger trips from Sept 28 to Oct 7, China State Railway Group said on Friday. The passenger peak fell on Oct 1, handling nearly 16 million passenger trips.
In most cities, students and their families were discouraged to travel. If they travel, it usually required 14 days of quarantine before returning to school, as well as nucleic acid tests. Many employers also required their employees to carry out nucleic acid tests before returning to work.
Although fewer people traveled, more parcels were transported. According to the State Post Bureau of China, more than 3.9 billion parcels were handled from Oct 1 to 7. Among them, 1.99 billion were delivered by couriers, an increase of 28.31 percent compared with last year and 100.38 percent compared with 2019. A total of 1.92 billion parcels were delivered to customers, a rise of 25.71 percent compared with last year and 104.4 percent compared with 2019.
The National Day holiday has been considered a good time for travel because of pleasant weather, and also since it is one of two week-long national holidays in China. The other is Spring Festival, or the Lunar New Year.
Before this year's National Day holiday, transport regulators estimated a surge in passenger trips since the emergence of COVID-19 cases in the summer restricted travel.
However, cases emerged in Harbin and Xiamen in September, both popular tourism cities, limiting travel during the holiday.
The Ministry of Transport said on Thursday about 400 million passenger trips were expected to be made from Oct 1 to 7. In 2019, the number surpassed 500 million.