Palace Museum Beijing goes online to sell tickets

Authorities at Beijing’s Palace Museum are planning to sell tickets online in an effort to reduce long queues of visitors standing outside ticket counters for hours, a media report said on Monday.

As means of tackling complications resulting from the crowds of spectators, Shan Jixiang, head of the Palace Museum, revealed that the museum has planed to shut ticket counters and replace them with online ticketing, reported.

More ticket channels, such as online booking and two dimensional codes for cell phone users, have been developed in response to increasing number of visitors.

However, experts warn that shutting down ticket counters and substituting them with a digitalised system may deprive access for people above mid-age to the museum.

“Even though we’re opening more online channels for visitors to book tickets, I don’t think we should have closed all the ticket windows considering those people who aren’t accustomed to the online system,” said Liu Simin, deputy director of Beijing Tourism Industry Association.

According to Liu, the tourism industry in China is very diverse. Many people do not arrange their trips scrupulously in advance. The complete digitalisation of the ticket system is unfair to those people.

The museum has set a limit of daily visitors to 80,000.

The Palace Museum is housed in the Forbidden City, the Chinese imperial palace from the Ming Dynasty to the end of the Qing Dynasty. It holds a total of 1,807,558 artefacts.