A state council circular said yesterday that such a move would allow people to take a vacation using Friday afternoon plus the weekend, as media reported today.

The circular also said that China will build more tourism infrastructure, including cruise ports and recreational vehicle (RV) parks, and give employees more flexibility in arranging vacation time.

Travel agencies in Shanghai said the move might also help to ease traffic congestion and overcrowding at scenic spots. Currently, about a quarter of holiday makers choose to start their summer break on a Saturday compared to 15 percent on a Friday, according to a travel agency.

Peng Li, a tourism analyst with an online travel operator said, "The half-day leave will allow tourists to start their tour earlier, thus alleviate the traffic and reception pressure of scenic spots and improve tourism quality and experience."

The full implementation of guaranteed paid leave and more public holidays were the keys to solving the disparity between supply and demand in the tourism market.


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