More Chinese are opting for staycations during holidays

By Du Qiongfang Source:Global Times Published: 2018/10/14 19:18:40

Illustration: Lu Ting/GT

Except for a brief visit with my family to Qibao Old Street, the nearest tourist attraction which is just 15-minute drive away from my home, I went nowhere else and just stayed at home during the recent National Day holiday.

However, my "staycation" during the holiday week was not an individual case. Data from WeChat shows that 21 million Chinese people had a daily movement of less than 100 steps during the holiday.

Although compared with China's total population of nearly 1.4 billion, 21 million is just a small proportion (and the data is not so accurate considering the total number of active WeChat users is 1 billion and not every user activates WeChat's "step counting" function), we can still see that the advancement of economy and technology has changed people's lifestyle in our society.

According to the report, South China's Guangdong Province, East China's Jiangsu, Zhejiang and Shandong provinces, and Northeast China's Liaoning Province are the top-five places that had the highest number of staycationers. These provinces are economically developed coastal regions.

The reason why people in these provinces spent seven consecutive days without leaving their homes is because of China's developed service industry and advanced internet technology. People can order food, do shopping and obtain entertainment content via mobile phones and computer. Leaving home is not a necessary procedure anymore in Chinese people's daily lives.

The report also showed that 56 percent of these people were born in the 1980s and 1990s. Contrary to older Chinese generations who now enjoy traveling, young Chinese people are reconsidering how to make the best use of their holidays.

With the improvement of Chinese people's living standards, the development of public transportation and the growing convenience of visa procedures, more Chinese people are keen on traveling.

Statistics show that China has become one of the leading tourism countries. According to the Report on World Tourism Economy Trends 2018 issued by World Tourism Cities Federation and Tourism Research Center of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, China topped the global tourist arrivals ranking in 2017, with arrivals reaching 4.5 billion. Meanwhile, China ranked second in the 2017 total tourist revenue ranking, with revenue of $680 billion.

Checking out different tourist attractions at home and abroad and buying quality and luxury foreign brands are an indispensable part of a holiday for many Chinese, because most had few opportunities or could not afford to travel in the past. Thus, traveling is not only a way of relaxing, but also a way of showing off.

But to younger generations who were raised while China's economy was fast growing and their family economic conditions were improving, traveling is not so attractive because many traveled around.

They would now rather have a good rest during China's few public holiday weeks, since post-80s and post-90s people are mainstays of most Chinese companies. They are absolutely worn out due to their stressful jobs.

What follows a week-long traveling holiday are symptoms of excessive fatigue without sufficient rest, including being unable to get up in the morning and unable to fall asleep at night, fatigue during work hours, being unable to concentrate and low work efficiency, which we collectively call "work syndrome" after holidays.

In order not to affect their working status after the holidays, many young Chinese choose to stay at home to build up strength and store up energy. The WeChat report also showed that many people staying at home all week spent their time reading or even working, which also shows how stressful work can be even during holidays.

It is foreseeable that the advancement of economy and technology will continue to subconsciously change more Chinese people's lifestyles.

The opinions expressed in this article are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Global Times.

Posted in: TWOCENTS

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