Flight bookings out of Hong Kong leap 400% on travel website

The top five flight destinations are Bangkok, Seoul, Tokyo, Singapore and Osaka. - Reuters

HONG KONG (Bloomberg): Trip.com's Hong Kong website experienced a nearly 400 per cent increase in outbound flight orders over the weekend compared with Sept 17-18, the online travel agency said Monday (Sept 26), after the city's government announced an easing of virus travel restrictions, including doing away with hotel quarantine.

Most orders were for the National Day long weekend at the start of October and Christmas, with short-haul travel in Asia proving popular.

The average length of overseas hotel bookings for Hong Kong travellers is three to four days, said Eddy Yip, Trip.com's e-commerce lead for Hong Kong and Taiwan.

The top five flight destinations are Bangkok, Seoul, Tokyo, Singapore and Osaka, with orders for the latter soaring 7,300 per cent from the previous weekend, Yip said in an emailed statement.

There was a 155 per cent increase from the previous weekend in inbound flight orders to Hong Kong, while the average hotel booking in the city is for about five days.

"Travellers from overseas countries may need more time to digest and respond to the '0+3' policy," Yip said, referring to curbs in the first three days of arriving in Hong Kong, such as not being allowed into bars and restaurants.

Trip.com is "convinced" inbound tourism will increase sharply in the fourth quarter, Mr Yip said. The travel company's Hong Kong-listed shares closed 5.1 per cent higher on Friday.

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