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attract the young consumer group. In late May, Qunar teamed up with 33 domestic and foreign carriers, including Air China, Chi
na Eastern Airlines, China Southern Airlines, Hainan Airlines, United Airlines and All Nippon Airways, to l
aunch discounted prices for students on more than 3,000 routes, along with the concept of student flight tickets.
Students who have registered successfully with their identific
tion documents on the platform will be able to book cheaper tickets. For instance, a one-way
flight ticket from Guangzhou to Beijing can be as cheap as 460 yuan ($66.7), which is about half of the price tag – 8
62 yuan – for a second-class seat on a high-speed train. Qunar said such low-price flight tickets compared with high-spee
d trains may change the travel habits of college students and create user stickiness.
Paying millions of dollars to secure their children a spot at an elite college may
sound absurd to many parents, but some are willing to do this.
Nicole Shen, the Chinese mother of a high school student in Palo Alto, California, said she would be wi
lling to pay a pretty penny upfront to get her daughter admitted to a top-tier university if she could afford it. “As long as eve
rything is legal,” she added.Zhao, 52, was introduced to William “Rick” Singer, a college consultant in California and the mast
ermind behind the scandal, by Michael Wu, who worked as an adviser at the Los Angeles area branch of in
vestment bank Morgan Stanley, according to the Los Angeles Times. Wu has since been fired.
Two wealthy Chinese families have recently been in the spotlight and t
he subject of widespread discussion after media reports showed they paid huge am
ounts in a high-profile college admissions scandal. The sums they paid dwarfed the typical amount footed by US parents.
The highest-known payoff to date is the $6.5 million by billionaire Zhao Tao, president and co-founder of Shandong Buchang Pharmaceuticals Co.