The three-day Mid-Autumn Festival holiday was just a warm-up for the weeklong National Day holiday in China, which begins on Monday, and many avid travelers took advantage of the short time between the holidays to extend their travel plans.
Meanwhile, the international travel market continues to grow its presence on Chinese social media, and Dragon Trail Interactive has released its findings on which travel brands performed the best on WeChat in the second quarter of this year. Many of those brands hope to benefit from Chinese travelers extending their fall holidays this year, but we’ll have to wait for third-quarter rankings to find out how they fared.
Here’s Jing Travel’s weekly guide to stories (including our own) that give insight into Chinese travel trends and how they affect the industry’s main players.
Marriott CEO speaks out against Trump’s trade war: Marriott International CEO Arne Sorenson said in an interview with Bloomberg that while the U.S. trade war with China has not yet hurt the hotel chain’s business, the President’s rhetoric—particularly on immigration and trade—could seriously impact travel to the States. Sorenson noted that President Donald Trump should strike a more welcoming tone to avoid a tourism downturn.
Ctrip partners with a London ride-hailing startup: Ctrip has joined forces with London startup Splyt, a ride-hailing service that bills itself as an on-demand mobility app. Ctrip will offer Splyt’s services through the Ctrip app, allowing Chinese travelers to use the ride-hailing service that is now available in over 1,000 cities. Splyt provides ride-hailing services through third parties, including Careem, Gett, and Cabify.
Fifth China-Israel flight route opens: Sichuan Airlines introduced twice-weekly direct flights between Chengdu and Tel Aviv on Wednesday. The Chinese airline became just the third carrier to offer direct flights between the countries, with the others being Hainan Airlines and the Israeli national carrier El Al.
U.S. passes Reciprocal Access to Tibet Act: Congressman Jim McGovern (D-Mass.) introduced the bill that would deny Chinese officials entry to the U.S., which comes in response to China banning journalists and officials from traveling to Tibet. The bill passed the House with unanimous support on Tuesday. The bill will now head to the Senate for a vote.
Fliggy introduces facial recognition ticketing: In an effort to fight ticket scalping during peak travel periods, Alibaba-backed online travel agency Fliggy introduced facial recognition ticketing at Xixi National Wetland Park in Hangzhou. The company plans to expand the service to 1,000 scenic destinations in China over the next three years.