Mask use and enforcement is the leading factor influencing transportation decisions in Japan (51%) and China (42%).
Both corporate and leisure travel are getting back on track in the world's second-largest economy.
Last-minute bookings have been one of the key features since the pandemic started, with around 60% of tickets issued up to 4 days before traveling.
China Southern's 96.85 million passengers in 2020 is likely to be the largest tally among global carriers, as U.S. rivals that occupied the top four slots in 2019 have suffered much sharper declines.
Tourism New Zealand initially attempted to replace the Chinese with visitors from the US and the UK before the rapid spread of the virus globally led to a full border closure in March.
Trips made in the first three days of the usual travel peak were down nearly 75 percent year on year.
Hainan will open 160 new domestic and international air routes bringing the total to 646 within five years.
Executives at companies like Accor, IHG, and Hyatt were similarly optimistic about the recovery outlook in China.
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