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Chinese tourists flock to London for Olympics

(Chinadaily.com.cn)

13:45, July 11, 2012

The number of flights booked to London by Chinese tourists rose by 158 percent in June compared to the previous month according to major online retailer Taobao.

That figure is expected to double in July and August when the British capital will host this year's Summer Olympics, which runs from July 28 to Aug 12.

A report released by Taobao's travel service, on which Web users can book flights and hotels, predicts the majority of the London-bound visitors will travel from Shanghai, Beijing and Hong Kong.

Liu Xiaoming, China's ambassador to Britain, said the number of tourists traveling to London for the Olympics from the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan will reach about 250,000, pushing up prices of flights and hotels.

Air fares to London are expected to increase by 50 percent in July, with budget hotel prices likely to rise fourfold, according to the Taobao report.

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