Tourist attractions face difficulties after reopening
Updated 17:07, 17-Apr-2020
Wang Yutong

Since the coronavirus pandemic is being effectively controlled across the country, many industries have gradually returned to work, and the tourism industry is no exception. 65.8 percent of tourist attractions have reopened and the total number of domestic tourists during the Qingming holiday reached 43.25 million.

Mount Huangshan, a well-known tourist attraction in east China's Anhui Province, had to implement a new contingency plan – it optimized reservation procedures and strengthened it's epidemic prevention and control efforts in light of the huge passenger flow on the second day of the Qingming holiday. 

The reopening of attractions and promotions have drawn out many who are keen to head out after being stuck at home for months. But this also creates a dilemma for many tourist sites that are concerned over virus transmission as a result of mass gatherings.

Visitors at the Mount Huangshan scenic area in east China's Anhui Province, April 6, 2020. /Huangshan's official WeChat account

Visitors at the Mount Huangshan scenic area in east China's Anhui Province, April 6, 2020. /Huangshan's official WeChat account

To ensure the safety and health of tourists, the Ministry of Culture and Tourism and the National Health Commission jointly issued a notice that only outdoor attractions can be opened to the public, and the number of tourists should not exceed 30 percent of its maximum capacity. And before the implementation of any policy, the expected number of tourists should be evaluated to prevent any overload.

Besides the epidemic prevention pressure, some local attractions, which make a profit from tourist receipts are facing a dire situation. With more national-level scenic spots offering a discount ticket to the public, private scenic areas are losing out. 

"Our main income is based on ticket sales and accommodation and we used to charge less than the 5A or 4A scenic spots. Now many tourists feel it's not cost-effective to visit us when those famous scenic spots are cheaper or even free," Zheng Youping, the head of a tourism enterprise in Ankang, northwest China's Shaanxi Province said.

Although some tourist attractions are allowed to reopen now, Zheng decided not to for the time being. In light of the current passenger flow and the potential costs, the reopening will make losses even greater.

Many scenic spots are facing the problems of having fewer tourists and the high cost of returning to work, but it is difficult to obtain sufficient financial support in a short time. The scenic spot is hoping for more targeted stimulus measures and financial support to help in boosting the tourism economy.