April 29, 2013
The arrival of the H7N9 bird flu has affected China's tourism
industry, with tourists shunning wetlands and farms while restaurants
eliminate chicken and duck from their menus.
More than 120 human
H7N9 infections, including 23 fatal cases, have been reported in China
thus far, raising concerns about a possible lull in domestic tourism
that occurred during the SARS epidemic a decade ago.
The three-day May Day holiday begins on April 29, with many urban Chinese travelling around the country for short trips.
agencies in Shanghai said local "agritainment" farms have been hiding
their fowl in order to quell concerns about the virus. H7N9 cases have
been reported in the eastern city, as well as nearby provinces of
Zhejiang, Jiangsu and Anhui that are favored by holiday makers in
According to a nationwide survey of tourist agencies conducted by
Hongyuan Securities, group tour packages in east China that were hit
hardest by the bird flu have not seen a drop in price, although wetland
visits have been removed from the agencies' recommendation lists.