(Bloomberg) -- Trip.com’s Hong Kong website experienced a nearly 400% increase in outbound flight orders over the weekend compared with Sept. 17-18, the online travel agency said Monday, after the city eased virus travel restrictions, including doing away with the dreaded hotel quarantine.
Most orders were for the National Day long weekend at the start of October and Christmas, with short-haul travel in Asia proving popular. The average length of overseas hotel bookings for Hong Kong travelers is three to four days, said Eddy Yip, Trip.com’s e-commerce lead for Hong Kong and Taiwan.
The top five flight destinations are Bangkok, Seoul, Tokyo, Singapore and Osaka, with orders for the latter soaring 7,300% from the previous weekend, Yip said in an emailed statement.
Trip.com’s Hong Kong-listed shares advanced as much as 6.7% Monday, building on Friday’s 5.1% gain.
For inbound flights to Hong Kong, there was a 155% increase in orders from the previous weekend. The average hotel booking in the city is for about five days.
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“Travelers from overseas countries may need more time to digest and respond to the ‘0+3’ policy,” Yip said, referring to curbs in the first three days of arriving in Hong Kong, such as not being allowed into bars and restaurants. Trip.com is “convinced” inbound tourism will increase sharply in the fourth quarter, he said.
Meanwhile, the co-founder and chief operating officer of Klook Travel Technology Ltd. said Japan was the top pick among customers, followed by Thailand. Many people are taking advantage of the October long weekend, Eric Gnock Fah said in an interview on Bloomberg Television. They “can’t wait to get back on the road,” he said.
(Updates share price, adds comments from Klook co-founder.)
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