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Many to take fast trains for weeklong vacation

[ 2011-09-30 10:46]     字号 [] [] []  
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The newly opened Beijing-Shanghai high-speed railway is expected to bring a flood of travelers into cities along its route during the National Day holiday, according to Chinese travel agencies.

"We have provided more than 10 routes for tourists to choose from, and about 1,000 people have ordered services from our agency for the holiday," said Zhang Lingjie, deputy director of China International Travel Service's domestic tour department.

He said the high-speed trains in China are among the most popular means of traveling in the country. More than 5,000 clients of his company have taken them since July.

"No means of transport can compete with the speed, comfort and convenience of high-speed bullet trains if the destination is within two hours," said Wei Xiao'an, a researcher at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences' tourism research center. "But the ticket price of bullet trains is comparatively high."

Travelers in China are expected to make nearly 300 million trips during the National Day holiday, which is Oct 1-7. That number is up 20 percent from last year, according to the Ministry of Public Security.

"Tourism in the regions along the high-speed railways has a promising future, as these regions have beautiful natural scenery and attractive cuisine," said Guo Yi, manager of the Beijing-based China Comfort Travel's domestic tour department.

She also said taking a high-speed train is the best way to travel among different cities if you want to explore China quickly and comfortably.

The Beijing-Shanghai high-speed railway goes through three municipalities and four provinces and has 24 stations. On Sept 24, 58 cities near the railway formed a league to promote tourism in the region.

The high-speed trains, though still popular, lost some of their luster in the eyes of travelers after a crash in Zhejiang province in July, which killed 40 people, Guo said.

"More emphasis should be placed on safety if the high-speed railways are to attract more passengers," said Yao Yanbo, an associate professor from Nankai University in Tianjin's tourism department.

She said tourism should be promoted by giving more convenience to travelers.

"Compared with many foreign cities, Chinese tourist destinations often show a lack of consideration because they don't contain enough signs with detailed information or enough information centers."

The National Day holiday is one of two Golden Weeks in China, when millions of people travel throughout the country. Spring Festival, or the traditional Chinese New Year, is the other.

About 145 billion yuan ($23 billion) is expected be spent during the weeklong National Day holiday, which is 25 percent more than last year, according to the China Tourism Academy.

(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Many to take fast trains for weeklong vacation

About the broadcaster:

Many to take fast trains for weeklong vacation

Nelly Min is an editor at China Daily with more than 10 years of experience as a newspaper editor and photographer. She has worked at major newspapers in the U.S., including the Los Angeles Times and the Detroit Free Press. She is also fluent in Korean.