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25 Feb, 2014

Amazing search engine graphics chart Chinese Spring Festival migrant movements


Beijing, (People’s Daily Online) February 20, 2014 – On January 26, 2014, search engine giant Baidu launched “Baidu Migration”, an online map tracking the movement of Chinese people migrating to other parts of the country for the Spring Festival. This map uses location-based technology to track its 200 million registered users. The data is gathered from smart phone usage, and is updated hourly.

The hottest travel routes on the “Baidu Migration” map of January 26.

The Chunyun of 2014 covers 40 days, and a total of 3.6 billion trips are expected to be made during the period. In this mass migration, what are the hottest departure points and destinations? Which routes are the busiest? In the past, we could not answer those questions precisely. However, along with the development of information technology, we are close to seeing the whole picture of Chunyun by applying big data.

Chunyun on the live map

Click on Beijing, and we can find out that on January 26 from 11:00 to 19:00, the top 3 destinations were Baoding, Tianjin and Dezhou. The highest numbers of incoming visitors were coming from Tianjin, Baoding, Chengdu and Shanghai. Through this new application, we know that Beijing, Shanghai and Guangdong had the largest outflow of travelers, which confirms the common sense judgment that developed regions have the greatest external populations.

However, big data also suggests that many migrant workers are no longer traveling to work in big cities far from their home towns. The greatest concentration of passengers flows was to areas 200-800 km from home.

Along with the development of mobile internet, big data will play a more and more important role in providing analysis in such areas as population migrations, the urbanization process, city administration, Chunyun transportation strategy, and cultural communications.

Chunyun in the ticket data

As well as the big data acquired from changing locations, ticket buying information is another important source.

On January 9 2014, total visits to the train ticket purchase website 12306 and its mobile client numbered 8.4 billion. That was the day when people began to buy tickets for the day before New Year’s Eve – the ones which are most in demand. 8.4 billion visits is the equivalent of every person in China visiting the website more than 6 times in the day. The website received 240 thousand clicks every second. If you were one second late when trying to buy your tickets online, you would fall behind another quarter of a million clicks!

Data from 12306 shows that for every train ticket sold that day there were more than one thousand visits. In this “cruel” data, we can sense the homesickness of each individual buyer. On January 9, a total of 5.01 million train tickets were sold online, making up 57.5% of the total sales for the day.