Business / Technology

Didi launches holiday car-pool alternative to Chinese New Year train service

(Xinhua) Updated: 2015-11-27 10:06

Didi launches holiday car-pool alternative to Chinese New Year train service

A man uses taxi-hailing app on his smartphone on a road in Guangzhou city, South China's Guangdong province, April 9, 2015. [Photo/IC]

BEIJING - There is a new alternative to conventional transportation for the tens of millions of Chinese who need to travel back to their hometown during the Chinese New Year for family reunions.

Chinese ride-hailing app Didi said on Thursday that people can car-pool home during the upcoming Chinese New Year instead of taking overcrowded trains, buses or airplanes.

China began selling tickets on Thursday for trains scheduled to leave between Jan 24 to March 3 next year, a 40-day period in China known as "Chunyun" when people travel back home to celebrate the Spring Festival, which falls on Feb 8 in 2016.

Though authorities have been putting more trains in service during the peak travel season each year, there are still people who can't get a train ticket home.

During this year's "Chunyun" period, China's train service completed 295 million trips.

Didi said its ride-sharing service Hitch, has been upgraded to pair travelling needs not only within one city but also across the country, thus making it possible for drivers to take on others when travelling home for the Chinese new year.

Didi's inter-city hitch service was first launched during the seven-day National Day Holiday in October this year and has seen trips stretching as far as 2,673 km and lasting as long as 60 hours.

But the ride-sharing service may prove more attractive to people taking shorter train trips. Didi said most of the inter-city trips in October were within 100 km, while another 20 percent in that period ranged between 100 and 300 km.


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