New Visa-Free policy sparks surge in tourism search

Now Shenzhen   |   November 27, 2023

A UNILATERAL visa-free policy by China for ordinary passport holders from France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain and Malaysia on a trial basis has triggered a surge in online searches of flights and tour products, major domestic travel operators revealed.

The searches of inbound air tickets from Malaysia soared 300% Friday following the announcement of the policy from a day earlier, and the increase was more than 100% for the other five countries, according to major domestic online travel operator Tongcheng Travel. Overall, the searches of inbound air tickets grew 12% following the policy, it said.

Online travel operator said visits to the China Travel Guide 2023 page on its online international version, which primarily serves overseas travelers to China, witnessed a 300% surge Friday from a day earlier. The recovery of inbound tourism is relatively slow compared to that of domestic and outbound tourism, it said.

In the first half of this year, travel agencies in China recorded 477,800 visits of inbound tourists compared to 8.56 million in the same period in 2019, according to the Ministry of Culture and Tourism. (

SOURCE: Shenzhen Daily