Passengers wait to board trains at Shanghai's Hongqiao Railway Station today. The Chinese New Year travel rush has begun

Chinese people make 3 billion trips during Lunar New Year

China World
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Hundreds of thousands of people in China have begun travelling from major cities to their smaller hometowns for celebrating the upcoming Lunar New Year with their families.

The epic holiday travel rush, billed as the world’s largest annual human migration, started today and is expected to last 40 days until March 12.

A total of 2.98 billion trips would be made by the 1.4 billion Chinese citizens during the period by train, bus and air, according to China Central Television Station. Each British resident would have to make 45 trips to reach the same number.

Passengers wait to board trains at Shanghai's Hongqiao Railway Station today. The Chinese New Year travel rush has begun

Passengers wait to board trains at Shanghai's Hongqiao Railway Station today. The Chinese New Year travel rush has begun

Passengers wait to board trains at Shanghai’s Hongqiao Railway Station today. The Chinese New Year travel rush has begun

The 40-day travel season, which started today, will see around three billion trips made by train, bus and air across the nation 

The 40-day travel season, which started today, will see around three billion trips made by train, bus and air across the nation 

The 40-day travel season, which started today, will see around three billion trips made by train, bus and air across the nation 

Most of the travellers will be migrant workers who are travelling from major cities to their smaller hometowns to see families

Most of the travellers will be migrant workers who are travelling from major cities to their smaller hometowns to see families

Most of the travellers will be migrant workers who are travelling from major cities to their smaller hometowns to see families

Members of a police SWAT team take positions at the Beijing Railway Station today as the Spring Festival travel rush begins

Members of a police SWAT team take positions at the Beijing Railway Station today as the Spring Festival travel rush begins

Members of a police SWAT team take positions at the Beijing Railway Station today as the Spring Festival travel rush begins

A policeman keeps order at Yuncheng North railway station in China's Shanxi Province today as travellers pack the space

A policeman keeps order at Yuncheng North railway station in China's Shanxi Province today as travellers pack the space

A policeman keeps order at Yuncheng North railway station in China’s Shanxi Province today as travellers pack the space

The staggering travel season comes into being as millions of Chinese people who live, work or study away from their hometown try to reunite with their family for China’s most important traditional holiday, the Chinese New Year or Lunar New Year.  

Also known as the Spring Festival, the festival falls on February 16 this year.

The Chinese rail authority is expecting to send 390 million passengers this year during the 40-day period, which is more than the entire population of the United States and six times the population of the United Kingdom.

The figure is a 8.8 per cent increase on last year’s number. It also means nearly 10 million Chinese people would be travelling by train every day in the next month and half.

The Chinese rail authority is expecting to send 390 million passengers during the 40 days, more than the population of USA

The Chinese rail authority is expecting to send 390 million passengers during the 40 days, more than the population of USA

The Chinese rail authority is expecting to send 390 million passengers during the 40 days, more than the population of USA

People wait in line to board a train at Nanjing railway station today as millions of people try to make their way home for holiday

People wait in line to board a train at Nanjing railway station today as millions of people try to make their way home for holiday

People wait in line to board a train at Nanjing railway station today as millions of people try to make their way home for holiday

Bags and suitcases are seen at Shenyang North railway station as people travel for the Lunar New Year in Liaoning province

Bags and suitcases are seen at Shenyang North railway station as people travel for the Lunar New Year in Liaoning province

Bags and suitcases are seen at Shenyang North railway station as people travel for the Lunar New Year in Liaoning province

Nearly 10 million Chinese people would be travelling by train every day in the next month and half because of Spring Festival

Nearly 10 million Chinese people would be travelling by train every day in the next month and half because of Spring Festival

Nearly 10 million Chinese people would be travelling by train every day in the next month and half because of Spring Festival

As stated by Huang Xin, the deputy director of the Passengers Department of China Railway, 4,395 pairs of trains would be dispatched daily before the Spring Festival and 4,484 pairs after.

Mr Huang said the authority would arrange extra trains for the travel rush to ensure passengers could go home and return to work. 

China Central Television Station reported the train stations around the country to be ‘quiet’ today. Apparently many people had left for their hometowns already, so there was no overcrowding in the stations, said a reporter.

The travel peak is expected to take place after February 16 when migrant workers, students and leisure travellers hit the road at the same time to go back to the city they live. 

A child cries on a suitcase at Shanghai's Hongqiao Railway Station as people pack the traffic hub on the first day of travel rush

A child cries on a suitcase at Shanghai's Hongqiao Railway Station as people pack the traffic hub on the first day of travel rush

A child cries on a suitcase at Shanghai’s Hongqiao Railway Station as people pack the traffic hub on the first day of travel rush

A passenger holds her luggage at the Beijing Railway Station as hundreds of thousands are leaving the capital city for home

A passenger holds her luggage at the Beijing Railway Station as hundreds of thousands are leaving the capital city for home

A passenger holds her luggage at the Beijing Railway Station as hundreds of thousands are leaving the capital city for home

Authority said extra trains would be arranged to ensure passengers could go home and return to work across China

Authority said extra trains would be arranged to ensure passengers could go home and return to work across China

Authority said extra trains would be arranged to ensure passengers could go home and return to work across China

To many Chinese migrant workers, the Chinese Lunar New Year is the only time of the year when they can go back home

To many Chinese migrant workers, the Chinese Lunar New Year is the only time of the year when they can go back home

To many Chinese migrant workers, the Chinese Lunar New Year is the only time of the year when they can go back home

SWAT officers keep a close watch of the Beijing Railway Station ahead of the Lunar New Year, which falls on February 16

SWAT officers keep a close watch of the Beijing Railway Station ahead of the Lunar New Year, which falls on February 16

SWAT officers keep a close watch of the Beijing Railway Station ahead of the Lunar New Year, which falls on February 16

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