China / Society

42 million flights to deal with travel rush

By Wang Qian ( Updated: 2014-01-14 12:12

As the Chinese Lunar New Year draws closer, this year's annual travel rush is expected to witness 42 million air trips, a 10 percent annual increase, from Jan 28 over the 40-day Spring Festival, a senior official said.

"During travel at this time, airlines can provide at least 1.1 million seats every day to meet soaring demand for the 'spring rush'," Xia Xinghua, deputy director of the Civil Aviation Administration, told a press conference on Tuesday.

He said airlines will increase weekly domestic flights to more than 62,000, up 24 percent annually, and international flights will go up 20 percent to more than 9,600, during the two estimated travel peaks for outbound and return journeys.

The peak travel period is estimated to last from Jan 28 to 30 and from Feb 4 to 14, according to Xia.

The hot destinations will be tourism cities such as Sanya, and cities with large numbers of workers from elsewhere, such as Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou of Guangdong province, Xia said.

Regional countries, such as Thailand, South Korea and Malaysia, will also be popular destinations.

He asked airlines to prepare for potential extreme weather conditions, especially heavy fog and snow, and to release any information regarding changed schedules as quickly as possible.

Zhao Huanxin contributed to this story.

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