Chinese holiday hotspot Hainan, has put regulations in place to ensure tourists aren’t ripped off over Spring Festival. Hotel room rates usually soar over the peak season. But now any price rises have been capped at ten percent.

As of this year, Hainan hoteliers won’t be allowed to raise room rates by more than 10 percent during the peak season. The regulation is an initiative to rebuild the island’s reputation and image, after rates skyrocketed last year.

But many visitors say the prices are still high, and question whether they can be controlled.

Dong Debiao, Deputy Director of Hainan Pricing Bureau said "Our price intervention is based on the Price Law and the regulations issued by the National Development and Reform Commission. The new rules are a temporary intervention, aiming to guide and regulate the market in the long run. We have also established supervision groups and hotlines."

Hotel room rates are about 3 percent higher than what they were during Spring Festival in 2010. That’s well below the 10 percent cap. Visitors and hoteliers say they approve of the new rules, saying it’s beneficial for Hainan’s tourism development in the long term.

One consumer said "It’s great that the price rise will be restricted to a certain range. We can’t afford it if the price is too high."

Skyrocketing room rates led to sharp and abnormal fluctuations during last year’s Spring Festival. That’s why Hainan is enhancing its price monitoring this year.


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