Public holidays in China
There are currently seven official public holidays in China. There was a major reform in 2008, abolishing the Labour Day Golden Week and adding three traditional Chinese holidays (Qingming Festival, Duanwu Festival, and Mid-Autumn Festival). A notable feature of mainland Chinese holidays is that weekends are usually swapped with the weekdays next to the actual holiday to create a long vacation period.
|Date||English name||Chinese name||Duration (2008-)||Duration (2000–2007)||Dates (2012) |
|January 1||New Year||元旦||3 days||1 day||Sun 1-Tue 3 January|
|1st day of 1st lunar month||Chinese New Year||春节||7 days||3 days||Sun 22-Sat 28 January|
|5th solar term (April 4 or April 5)||Qingming Festival||清明节||3 days||N/A||Mon 2-Wed 4 April|
|May 1||Labor Day||劳动节||3 days||3 days||Sun 29 April - Tue 1 May|
|5th day of 5th lunar month||Dragon Boat Festival||端午节||3 days||N/A||Sat June 23|
|15th day of 8th lunar month||Mid-Autumn Festival||中秋节||3 days||N/A||Sun September 30|
|October 1||National Day||国庆节||3 days||3 days||Mon 1–Wed 3 October|
Note on duration and 2011 dates: Most sources in China count the total number of days off (including statutory holidays, transferred days and weekends), which is important for Chinese people working a seven-day week. E.g. a holiday on a Friday is always announced as a three day holiday (Friday-Sunday). See the references for details of transferred holidays in 2011.
In all these holidays, if the holiday lands on a weekend, the days will be reimbursed after the weekend.
The Chinese New Year and National Day holidays are three days long. The week-long holidays on May (Labor) Day and National Day began in 2000, as a measure to increase and encourage holiday spending. The resulting seven-day holidays are called "Golden Weeks" (黄金周), and have become peak seasons for travel and tourism. In 2008, the Labor Day holiday was shortened to one day to reduce travel rushes to just twice a year, and instead three traditional Chinese holidays were added.
Generally, if there is a three day holiday, the government will declare it to be a seven day holiday. However, citizens are required to work during a nearby weekend. Businesses and schools would then treat the affected Saturdays and Sundays as the weekdays that the weekend has been swapped with; the disruption to schedules is not regarded as unusual by locals, and official announcements for changes to the holidays often occur throughout the year.
The following is a graphical schematic of how the weekend shifting works.
In addition to these holidays, applicable to the whole population, there are four official public holidays applicable to specific sections of the population:
|Date||English name||Chinese name||Duration||Applicable to|
|March 8||International Women's Day||国际妇女节||half-day||Women|
|May 4||Youth Day||青年节||half-day||Youth from the age of 14 to 28|
|June 1||Children's Day||六一儿童节||1 day||Children below the age of 14|
|August 1||Army Day||建军节||half-day||Military personnel in active service|
The closeness of Labor Day and Youth Day resulted in an unexpectedly long break for schools in 2008 - the Youth Day half-holiday entitlement had been largely forgotten because it has been subsumed into the Golden Week.
Traditional holiday scheme
|Date||English name||Local name||Remarks|
|January 1||New Year||元旦|
|1st day of 1st lunar month||Spring Festival (Chinese New Year)||春节||Based on Chinese calendar|
|15th day of 1st lunar month||Lantern Festival||元宵节||Based on Chinese calendar|
|2nd day of 2nd lunar month||Zhonghe Festival (Dragon Raising its Head)||中和节||Based on Chinese calendar|
|March 8||International Women's Day||国际妇女节|
|March 12||Arbor Day||植树节||Also known as National Tree Planting Day (全民义务植树日)|
|5th Solar Term (usually April 4–6)||Qingming Festival (Chinese Memorial Day)||清明节||Based on the Jieqi Qingming.|
|May 1||Labour Day||劳动节||International Workers' Day|
|May 4||Youth Day||青年节||Commemorating the May Fourth Movement|
|June 1||Children's Day||六一儿童节|
|5th day of 5th lunar month||Dragon Boat Festival (Duanwujie)||端午节||Based on Chinese calendar|
|July 1||CPC Founding Day||建党节||Formation of 1st National Congress on July 1921|
|July 11||China National Maritime Day||中国航海日||The anniversary of Zheng He's first voyage|
|August 1||Army Day||建军节||Nanchang Uprising (南昌起义) on August 1, 1927|
|7th day of 7th lunar month||Double Seven Festival||七夕||The Chinese Valentine's Day, based on Chinese calendar|
|15th day of 7th lunar month||Spirit Festival (Ghost Festival)||中元节||Based on Chinese calendar|
|15th day of 8th lunar month||Mid-Autumn Festival (Moon Festival)||中秋节||Based on Chinese calendar|
|October 1||National Day||国庆节||Founding of PRC on October 1, 1949|
|9th day of 9th lunar month||Chongyang Festival||重阳节||Based on Chinese calendar.|
Ethnic Minorities Holidays
There are public holidays celebrate by certain ethnic minorities in certain regions, they are decided by local governments. The following are holidays at province-level divisions, there are more at lower level divisions.
|Date||English name||Local name||Chinese name||Ethnic Groups||Remarks|
|1st day of Tibetan year||Losar||ལོ་གསར||洛萨/藏历新年||Tibetan||7 days in Tibet|
|30.6 of Tibetan calendar||Sho Dun||༄༅། ཞོ་སྟོན།||雪顿节||Tibetan||1 day in Tibet|
|1.10 of Islamic calendar||Eid ul-Fitr||开斋节/肉孜节||Hui, Uyghur and other Muslims||2 days for all in Ningxia; 1 day for Muslims (only) in Xinjiang|
|10.12 of Islamic calendar||Eid al-Adha||古尔邦节||Hui, Uyghur and other Muslims||2 days for all in Ningxia; 3 days for Muslims, 1 day for others in Xinjiang|
See also↑Jump back a section
Works cited and notes
- Xinhuanet.com "Xinhuanet.com." How will people spend China's 1st Qingming Festival holiday?. Retrieved on 2008-04-04.
- "国务院办公厅关于2011年 部分节假日安排的通知" (in Mandarin). General Office of the State Council of the People's Republic of China. 2010. Retrieved 2011-01-17. Issued 9 December 2010.
- Monday 1 is the statutory holiday.
- The three-day public holiday began on Chinese New Year's Day itself from 2000 to 2007. In 2008 it was shifted back by one day, and now begins on Chinese New Year's Eve.
- Wednesday 2 (New Year's Eve), Thursday 3 (New Year's Day) and Friday 4 are statutory holidays. Saturday 5 and Sunday 6 are the weekend. Monday 7 and Tuesday 8 are also holidays; work schedules transfer to Sunday 30 January and Saturday 12 February. This is officially counted as a seven-day holiday (Wednesday-Tuesday).
- Tuesday 1 is a statutory holiday. The authorities count this as a three-day holiday (Sunday-Tuesday).
- Thu/Fri June 21–22 are statutory holidays.
- Monday October 1 is a statutory holiday.
- The entire first week of October, including the weekend of 6-7 are treated as holidays.
- "Thinking Chinese - A holiday invasion – Why are Chinese enthusiastically adopting new festive events?". Retrieved August 29, 2012.
- "Chinese Holidays" (in Chinese). Xinhua.