Room bookings jump as entrance exam nears

By Zhu Wenqian (China Daily) 10:38, June 03, 2024

As the National College Entrance Examination approaches, bookings of hotel rooms and bed-and-breakfast stays located close to exam venues are on the rise, and the booking volumes have been higher than last year's, according to industry players.

The key examination starts on June 7 nationwide annually, and concludes on different dates based on the arrangements of various provinces.

As of May 28, the booking volumes of such hotel rooms had surged some 140 percent year-on-year. The bookings began to increase significantly since May 21, with daily booking volumes growing by more than 50 percent over the previous day, according to Qunar, a Beijing-based online travel agency.

In the last week of May, domestic cities that saw the highest week-on-week increase in booking volumes of such hotels included Hefei, Anhui province; Harbin, Heilongjiang province; Changchun, Jilin province; Beijing; and Nanjing, Jiangsu province, Qunar found.

"The average price of hotel rooms located near the exam venues has increased by about 10 percent over the previous week, and the supply of such hotel rooms is sufficient," said Xiao Peng, a researcher with the big data research institute of Qunar.

"More parents have booked hotel rooms that are close to the exam venues this year, and the total booking volume has jumped significantly over last year," Xiao said.

Among different types of hotels, chain hotels are the most popular this year, and their booking volumes accounted for nearly 40 percent of the total, which was 10 percentage points higher than last year.

The booking volumes of luxury hotels have also climbed, and bookings for short-stay hotels near the exam venues have been a popular choice among several parents, Qunar said.

Hotels located near exam venues have launched value-added services for students and parents. These include complimentary pickup, advanced check-in and delayed checkout.

Besides, some hotels are offering rooms far away from noisy streets and elevators, in addition to stationery bags and snacks to students and parents.

Meanwhile, some parents have booked B&B stays near the exam venues this year, and many B&B stays have added tags related to the exam online to attract more consumers.

As of May 27, online searches for such B&B stays had surged some 400 percent over April, according to Tujia, a homestay booking platform.

B&B stays with laundry and cooking facilities, complete daily necessities, Wi-Fi services, and 24-hour hot water, have been well-received, and the booking volumes have so far tripled from April, Tujia said.

"Two-bedroom apartments accounted for nearly 70 percent of the total booked stays. Booking such rooms can help provide comprehensive care for the daily life of students who take the exam," said Liu Yang, chief business officer of Tujia.

Besides, some B&B owners said in online posts that they provide high-quality pillows and zero-press mattresses to help students and parents sleep well ahead of the exams.

(Web editor: Tian Yi, Liang Jun)


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