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Some turn to scalpers for tickets home (2)

(China Daily)

09:14, September 30, 2011

Travelers usually have a hard time buying tickets in China before long holidays, when hundreds of millions of people tend to return home or go elsewhere.

At the ticket hall of the Beijing Railway Station on Thursday, dozens of people held up signs asking for tickets from people who had come to the station to return their tickets and claim refunds.

Huang Shulin, a migrant worker from Heilongjiang province, said a person will have difficulty buying a ticket to go toward Harbin even if he starts looking for it 10 days before he wants to depart.

"I am here just to try my luck," Huang said at the station, while holding up a sign soliciting tickets.

"Right now the scalpers online have raised the price (of tickets) from 200 yuan to 1,000 yuan," Huang said. "That's even more expensive than a flight."

Guan Yuhui, another migrant worker from Rizhao, Shandong province, was also searching for a scalper at the station after he had failed to find someone who was returning a ticket that would take him in the direction of his hometown.

"My top concern is whether these scalpers' tickets are valid or not," Guan said.

Railway stations throughout China expect to accommodate a record number of 69 million passengers during the National Day holiday, according to the Ministry of Railways.

Xinhua contributed to this story.

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