Spring Festival crowds boost Hangzhou’s tourism industry

Hangzhou’s scenic areas and tourist villages attracted more than 9.37 million visitors during the week-long Chinese New Year holiday, a 566.5% increase over the same period last year.

More than 4 million visitors visited the city center, an increase of 2.1 percentage points from 2019 when the pandemic hit.

West Lake, Hefang Street, Grand Canal Scenic Area, Liangzhu Relic Park and Xixi Wetland were the most popular among tourists.

West Lake received 2.92 million visitors, a jump of 406.8% over the same period last year. Feilai Mountain, Three Moon Mirror Pools and Hangzhou Zoo were the three most popular attractions.

The city’s hotels welcomed 1.15 million overnight tourists, an increase of 530 percent year-on-year and 4 percentage points more than in 2019.

You Gong

During the week-long Chinese New Year, West Lake received 2.92 million visitors, a jump of 406.8% over the same period last year.

According to statistics from the local department, the number of tourists from outside the city increased by 41 percent year-on-year, with the majority coming from Shanghai and the provinces of Jiangsu, Guangdong, Anhui and Shandong.

About 35 percent of visitors came to Hangzhou for leisure, 20.9 percent for sightseeing, and 18.9 percent for visiting relatives and friends, indicating that the tourism business is reviving.

During the holiday, 41 scenic spots in and around Hangzhou were free for tourists. About 2 million visitors toured these free scenic spots, saving 90.81 million yuan (US$13.44 million) in entrance fees.

Hangzhou has organized 14 Southern Song Dynasty-themed activities to encourage people and younger generations to learn about the city’s history.

A special intangible cultural heritage shopping festival to mark the Chinese New Year was also launched online.

A total of 15.9 million yuan was spent on 406 different kinds of cultural and creative products.

According to the Hangzhou Commerce Bureau, citywide consumption revenue reached about 14.99 billion yuan, a 21.6 percent increase over the previous Chinese New Year holiday period.

To stimulate the economy, the Hangzhou government distributed consumption coupons. Downtown business zones, including Wulin, Hubin and Qianjiang New Town, held retail festivals.

Approximately 1.66 million transactions were executed across the three business areas, representing a 72.6% year-over-year increase.

Sales at 300 shopping malls, supermarkets, gas stations and restaurants increased 47.4 percent year-on-year, totaling 1.67 billion yuan.

Among them, the two largest retail malls, Hangzhou Tower and Hubin Yintai, saw sales increases of 86.7 and 77.2 percent, respectively.

Visitors from outside the city preferred cultural and historical streets. The ancient streets of Hefang, Pingyao, Xianlinbu and Yangzhou were full of tourists.

The total spending by travelers in Hangzhou was 2.11 billion yuan, an increase of 85.9 percent over the same period last year.

Spring Festival crowds boost Hangzhou's tourism industry

You Gong

People hang red lanterns in front of Liuhe Pagoda in the hope of a good year.

The catering industry also enjoyed a windfall. Restaurants reported brisk business over the holiday.

According to data from UnionPay Merchant Co, approximately 3.78 million transactions were made across 80,000 eateries in the city, representing a 49.8% year-on-year increase.

People spent over 2 billion yuan on dining out, up 61.6% year-on-year.

Official consumption vouchers have also boosted the catering business. By January 27, about 271,900 vouchers worth 9.08 million yuan had been redeemed, resulting in 39.9 million yuan of restaurant consumption.

Much of the festival season encouraged people to buy new energy vehicles. One of the government’s initiatives was to provide subsidies for all-electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids, which gave a boost to the new energy vehicle industry.

Gongshu District provided special subsidies of 30 million yuan to EV customers. During the holiday season, 641 EVs from 10 retailers were sold out, generating 244 million yuan in sales revenue.

During the festive season, domestic car makers ZEEKR and NIO witnessed sales growth of 747 and 164 percentage points respectively.

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