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April 2, 2020

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Qingming cemetery visit slots booked out

All 160,000 slots to visit Shanghai’s 54 cemeteries and columbaria on Saturday, the day of the Qingming Festival, have been fully reserved, the city’s civil affairs authorities said yesterday.

Qingming is when Chinese people clean family tombs and pay tribute to their ancestors. This year, visitors to cemeteries are controlled via online reservations to prevent crowds amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.

There are only a few slots left for April 5 and 6, which are also included in the three-day Qingming Festival holiday, the Shanghai Civil Affairs Bureau said.

A total of 140,000 and 120,000 slots were made available for reservation on these two days, respectively.

The city’s cemeteries and columbaria began taking reservations on their WeChat accounts from March 26, with four two-hour time slots available at each location every day between March 28 and April 12.

By 11am yesterday, the 54 cemeteries and columbaria had provided 450,600 reservation slots for the period, and 308,900 had been booked.

Those without reservations should avoid visiting, said Zeng Qun, deputy director of the bureau.

Tomb-sweepers must have their temperatures checked, present their health QR code and wear masks.

Online tomb-sweeping services are also available via websites or WeChat accounts of cemeteries and columbaria.


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