To ensure the smooth and safe movement of people and cargo during the travel rush of next month’s Spring Festival, implement relaxed epidemic control measures for travelers, and encourage flexible and off-peak vacations on holidays, estimated A plan to ease the pressure on things was issued late Tuesday. Passenger numbers will increase significantly.
China will downgrade its COVID-19 controls starting January 8, withdrawing measures such as closed-loop transportation and centralized quarantine for inbound travelers. This coincides with his 40-day Lunar New Year travel rush, which begins on January 7th and ends on February 15th.
Travel epidemic measures were optimized earlier this month.
The new measures are expected to boost cross-regional passenger and freight traffic, according to plans released by China’s cabinet, the State Council.
Service providers should implement the latest measures. Travelers will no longer be required to have a negative nucleic acid test result or health code, will not be required to undergo a nucleic acid test or health test upon arrival, and will not be subject to temperature checks.
The plan also prohibits stopping or restricting public transportation or impeding the movement of vehicles or vessels.
Road checkpoints have been removed and public transport services suspended for epidemic control must quickly resume normal operations.
Local governments are being asked to consider and implement policies to allow flexible vacations to ease the pressure of mass travel. To avoid this, students are asked to avoid starting the new school year during the travel rush.
The Chinese New Year falls on January 22nd, and travel usually peaks around the seven-day holiday.
The plan also aims to improve the efficiency of cargo transportation, removing requirements such as the need for negative nucleic acid tests and health codes for truck drivers and seafarers. Interregional truck drivers no longer require nucleic acid testing upon arrival.
Restrictions on all forms of transportation services and unauthorized closure of transportation and logistics facilities are prohibited.
The plan also emphasized the importance of rush-time epidemic control and safety issues.
Service providers must inspect transportation facilities to avoid risks. Care should also be taken to avoid other potential risks, such as rusty driving skills.
China’s Lunar New Year travel rush has been the world’s largest annual movement of people for decades. Nearly 3 billion trips were made in 40 days in 2019, before COVID-19.
From 2020 onwards, people are encouraged to remain still during the festival to avoid contagion and contagion.
The last festival made just 1.05 billion trips, compared to 870 million in 2021 and 1.5 billion in 2020.
Transportation hubs have become quieter as a result of fewer passengers. Due to poor business over the past three years, some restaurants and shops at airports and train stations have closed.
Transport hubs are gradually reviving as optimized measures have been put in place.
Zhang Qin, who works in telecommunications, took his annual leave on Monday to take his sons from Beijing to Nanchang in Jiangxi province. He planned a visit to his hometown before the rush. His two boys aged 3 and his 5, he has been home for over a month due to the epidemic.
“They hadn’t traveled in a while,” the father said, adding that the boys were excited to be on the train again.
Railway staff have also seen an increase in passenger numbers as more high-speed services were introduced and epidemic control eased.
“Due to the epidemic, the number of passengers has decreased in recent years, but recently with the relaxation of epidemic measures and a faster service between Beijing and Shijiazhuang, which takes only an hour, the number of passengers has increased. It’s increasing.” Working at Shijiazhuang Railway Station in Hebei Province.
Qi Tie, a business traveler from Beijing to Shijiazhuang, said it was easier to board trains because he no longer needed a nucleic acid test or health code.
Guo Mingju, who recently flew to Hainan from Chongqing, said after three years he was finally able to experience the freedom of travel without the need for health questions or reports.
Yang Zekun contributed to this story.