Chinese Valentine’s Day shopping spree signals consumption rebound

Source: Global Times Published: 2020/8/25 21:58:36

A buyer examines flowers at the Dounan International Flora Auction Trading Center in Kunming, capital of Southwest China's Yunnan Province on Monday. As the largest fresh-cut flower market in Asia, the center sells 3 million to 3.5 million blossoms daily ahead of Qixi, the Chinese version of Valentine's Day, which fell on Tuesday this year. Photo: cnsphoto

Exploding car-hailing orders, surging flower and film ticket sales, higher airfares and long lines at luxury and jewelry stores, all were seen on Tuesday, Chinese Valentine's Day, and they may signal a further consumption rebound in China, where the COVID-19 pandemic has gradually been put under control.

It is "conservatively estimated" that there will be more than 50 million ride-hailing calls on Tuesday, about 40 percent more than usual, Li Min, vice president of Chinese ride-hailing giant Didi Chuxing, said on Tuesday.

The evening rush hour will start early at 4pm and peak at 6pm, so many people may be unable to get a taxi. Didi's travel platform predicts that orders will be concentrated at popular places such as restaurants and large shopping malls.

The road was "crazy crowded," a resident of Shenzhen, South China's Guangdong Province told the Global Times at 9pm on Tuesday. "After 20 minutes, we had only moved 10 meters."

On food-delivery and online services provider Meituan Dianping, flower sales exceeded 400 million yuan ($57.85 million) as of Tuesday afternoon, more than double the year-earlier level.

Major cities such as Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Chengdu and Chongqing had the highest sales, according to Meituan.

More than 340 million yuan worth of film tickets had been sold nationwide as of 2 pm Tuesday, data from Chinese ticketing platform Maoyan showed.

According to online travel firm Group, the popularity of five-star hotels on Tuesday rose 12 percent from last year. Bookings from young people, especially those born after 1995, increased 19 percent, making them the fastest-growing group.

Starting from the weekend before Chinese Valentine's Day to Wednesday - the day after Valentine's Day - airfares for popular Chinese cities increased 17 percent, data from showed.

Long lines were seen at major luxury stores such as Chanel and Louis Vuitton at SKP, a high-end mall in Beijing, the Global Times observed.

"It's like a shopping spree," a sales representative in a luxury store in Beijing told the Global Times on Tuesday, saying sales were up by 50 percent on the day.

"Each customer will spend around 20,000 yuan," said the person.

blog comments powered by Disqus