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China's railways to carry 235 mln people during Spring Festival


14:12, January 06, 2012

BEIJING, Jan. 6 (Xinhua) -- China's railways will carry 235 million passengers during the 40-day Spring Festival travel rush, up 6.1 percent year-on-year, the Ministry of Railways said Friday.

A daily average of 5.88 million people will make trains trips from Jan. 8 to Feb. 16, the ministry said in a statement on its website.

Economic hubs such as Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai and Hangzhou and the inland provinces of Sichuan, Hubei, Jiangxi, Anhui and Hunan will see the most activity during the period, as millions of rural migrant workers and students head home for family reunions, according to the statement.

The ministry has arranged for extra trains in anticipation of the rush, the statement said, but added that "the conflict remains between passenger demand and railway capacity."

Railway authorities have long been under pressure to increase capacity and improve ticketing services, as many citizens find it extremely hard to secure a single ticket during major holidays.

The ministry has begun allowing customers to book their tickets online or by phone to ease the ordeal of buying tickets. However, website glitches and the huge demand have rendered the new ways ineffective to many ticket buyers.

The Spring Festival, or the Chinese Lunar New Year, falls on Jan. 23.


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