BEIJING, July 30 (Xinhua) -- Eateries, malls and cinemas have taken the front seat in witnessing China's robust consumption after dark as summer fuels an appetite for nighttime services, according to a report released by Alibaba.
Since June, the market for nighttime food delivery services has significantly expanded and seen a growing legion of takeaway delivery drivers, according to data from Eleme, Alibaba's flagship takeaway-ordering app.
In many third- and fourth-tier cities, the number of couriers bustling around at night grew by over 60 percent year on year, while second-tier cities saw the strongest growth in take-out services after 9 p.m.
Busy delivery men at night are seen as an indicator of a city's nighttime economy vitality, according to Alibaba. Over one-third of couriers are still on the road in the small hours in Shenzhen, Xiamen and Foshan.
The Alibaba report also showed marked regional difference. Amid the top 10 vibrant cities of nighttime consumption, nine are in southern China and Beijing is the only northern city listed.
Besides catering services, consumption of cultural services at night is also growing. The report said the young preferred watching films at night, with the cities of Guangzhou, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Beijing and Hangzhou leading the viewership.
In terms of shopping, Alibaba's online mall Taobao saw the largest number of purchases made during 9 p.m. to 10 p.m. for the day, while over 83 percent of the businesses on Alibaba's local services platform Koubei are still in service an hour before midnight.