WeChat Offline Payment Transactions Up 23% During Spring Festival Holiday

WeChat, a social media platform owned by Tencent, released on January 19 it’s consumption data for the Spring Festival holiday. In the face of a gradual increase in consumption enthusiasm, the offline payment transaction volume of users using WeChat increased by 23%, reaching a peak on the last day of the holiday.

Consumption enthusiasm is also reflected in the trading orders of WeChat’s mini program. Orders for travel, catering, retail, and movies increased by 76%, 40%, 32%, and 27% respectively.

Digital red envelopes on WeChat were still a popular way to express New Year’s greetings. During the holiday, users sent over 4 billion red envelopes through WeChat, including 600 million especially for New Year’s greetings. WeChat added random greetings this year with “Happy Chinese Year of the Rabbit”, “Rolling in It” and “Full Blessings” among the top three preferred by users.

People’s travel enthusiasm was greatly improved compared with last year. Users took 15 trillion steps compared with 12.9 trillion steps in 2021, while 10% of them took over 10,000 steps per day.

Many people also took the holiday time to read. The total reading time of all WeChat readers exceeded more than 18 million hours, with the longest reading time of a single person lasting 120 hours and the average daily reading time exceeding 17 hours. Among them, film and television took top place amongst readers as The Three-Body Problem returned to first place and its follow up The Wandering Earth rose to fifth place.

The number of short videos related to Spring Festival released by users on WeChat increased by nearly 170%. Hometown life, family reunions and holiday foods were the topics most recorded by users. In addition, this year’s CCTV Spring Festival Gala was broadcast on WeChat again, attracting over 190 million viewers.

As the first Spring Festival after the lifting of epidemic controls, there seemed to be a collective recovery and a certain vitality in consumption in many fields.

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According to data posted by Chinese food delivery giant Meituan, in the first six days during the Spring Festival holiday, the order volume of multi-person dining packages nationwide increased by 53% year-on-year. Among them, Shanghai showed the greatest increase in orders, seeing its order volume increase by 240% compared with last year. Pre-made dishes, which have been popular over the last year, have also become a new staple of many families’ dinners. According to JD.com, the turnover of pre-cooked dishes during the Spring Festival increased by more than six times year-on-year.

According to the data center of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, there were 308 million domestic tourists during the Spring Festival holiday this year, an increase of 23.1% year-on-year. Domestic tourism revenue reached 375.843 billion yuan ($55.6 billion), up 30% year-on-year. Outbound travel also restarted. According to Tongcheng Travel, the booking volume of outbound and inbound air tickets, and international hotels, increased by 258%, 632%, and 177% year-on-year respectively.