Passengers wait to board trains at the Shenyang Railway Station in Shenyang, capital of northeast China's Liaoning Province, Feb. 2, 2017. Some 11.5 million trips were made Thursday on China's railways with travelers returning to work at the end of the week-long Spring Festival holiday. Spring Festival, or the Chinese Lunar New Year, is the most important occasion for family reunions and fell on Jan. 28 this year. (Xinhua/Zhang Wenkui)
CHANGCHUN, Feb. 4 (Xinhua) -- Answering queries, punching tickets, collecting used instant noodle pots, the Spring Festival travel rush is always a busy time for the employees of Changchun Railway Station.
Li Qiang, who works on the ticket kiosk, smiles and asks her customer to confirm the details of their booking for the third time.
"It only takes seconds to sell a ticket, but we must do whatever we can to avoid mistakes," said Li. "Ticket changes are difficult over the Spring Festival."
Li talks with more than 2,000 passengers every day for nine hours during the Spring Festival holiday.
Migrant workers are the main buyers of train tickets from the kiosk. "They do not use the online booking system, so we need to help them face to face," Li said.
Sun Tianyou works for the station's security team. Sun and his colleagues have confiscated more than 1,900 dangerous items, such as knives, since Chunyun began on Jan. 13.
Endless streams of passengers walk into and out of the waiting hall where Pan Xiangke is using a cumbersome machine to clean the floor. He drives back and forth at least 90 times everyday.
Everyday over the holiday, the station sanitation team collect more than 5,000 used instant noodles pots and remove 20 tonnes of trash a day.
Yang Hongmei works at the information desk in the waiting hall. Over Chunyun she answer questions from more than 10,000 passengers everyday.
"I spend less than ten minutes finishing my lunch and I don't drink much water in case I need go to toilet too often," Yang said.
Zhang Zhongming is a ticket inspector. Everyday he stands at the ticket gate for up to nine hours, punching more than 10,000 train tickets in that time.
"My forearm muscles now are very strong," he said.
Zhang Zhen patrols the station's platforms for up to 10 hours a day in the winter when temperatures can drop to minus 20 degrees Celsius.
Changchun Railway Station is the largest railway terminal in northeast China. This year it is expected to transport more than 100,000 passengers each day during the 40-day holiday travel rush.
"It is really freezing cold, but I feel warm when passengers thank me," said Zhang.