The badly hit tourism industry is showing some signs of early recovery as Shanghai operators reorganize local group tours.
Shanghai Culture and Tourism Administration issued a notice on March 15, allowing group tours within the city, while a ban remains in effect on cross-province or cross-city tours amid the coronavirus disease outbreak.
Shanghai resident Zhu Ming has prebooked a one-day tour to Qingxi Countryside Park and Zhujiajiao watertown, both in Qingpu District, over the weekend with her parents.
"I want to breathe some fresh air and embrace nature after being kept at home for a month," the 28-year-old Zhu said.
"I only took strolls inside my residential complex before resuming work and it was too boring," she said. "I'm excited for the tour."
Li Weichen, a tourist from Nanjing, in neighboring Jiangsu Province, is planning a trip to some iconic attractions in Shanghai on Friday and has already booked a tour package.
"I originally planned to visit Shanghai in late February when the weather warmed up, but the plan was delayed because of the epidemic," he said.
Li will visit the Oriental Pearl TV Tower, the Bund and take a Huangpu River cruise tour.
Travel companies have already re-launched several hundred one-day tours in Shanghai via Trip.com, covering many of the city's top attractions.
Searches for some one-day itineraries since March 15 have soared over 50 percent from last month, and these include a one-day tour combining the Shanghai Museum, Oriental Pearl TV Tower, the Bund and the Huangpu River cruise, according to Trip.com.
Outskirt tours to destinations like Zhujiajiao watertown and Chongming Island have also been reintroduced.
Disinfection of tour buses is conducted after each use, and tour guides, drivers and tourists are all required to have their temperature measured and present their health QR code, Trip.com said. Disposable hand sanitizers and wipes are prepared.
"Flower appreciation, hiking and cycling tours which allow tourists to enjoy the city's spring and nature are conducted, which also prevents mass gathering in enclosed areas," said Zhou Weihong, deputy general manager of Shanghai Spring Tour.
The travel agency has suffered more than 400 million yuan (US$57 million) in losses due to the epidemic.
It has launched several one-day walking tours to Changxing Island Countryside Park, Xinchang ancient town, Mingzhu Lake Park, Dongping National Forest Park and Nanhuizui Guanhai Park, an emerging destination for weekend getaways in the Pudong New Area.
Tours to Zhujiajiao watertown plus strawberry picking, Haishang Huakai Ecological Garden and Fengjing ancient town, Guyi Garden and Nanxiang ancient town, and a walking tour on Yuyuan Road are also on the list of the travel agency.
Editor: Yang Meiping
Tip: Hassle-free Shanghai Guided Tours recommended by Shanghai Private Tour during the COVID-19
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Further Readings About Traveling in Shanghai during the COVID-19
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