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CHANGE PUBLIC HOLIDAYS IN CHINA

Popularity 5Viewed 2664 times 2014-4-26 11:51 |System category:News| PUBLIC

I want to add my voice to the calls for China to change holiday arrangements for the general population. The golden weeks were perfect for marking culturally important days, ensuring workers got reasonable numbers of holidays and promoting a national spirit .... BUT .... after the coming of the cars and private travel (synonymous with the growth of the middle class and access to money for travel) the traditionally favoured destinations like Beijing, Shanghai, Qingdao, Sanya, Wuxi, Yangshuo, Guilin, Xi'an, Hangzhou etc etc became incredibly overcrowded. On one National Day, Xiamen's tiny Gulangyu Island recorded the most people in one spot in all of China (over 100000). This year, I think that honour went to Jiuzhaigou where hundreds of tourists were stranded for many hours and couldn't even return to their accommodation.  The beautiful places are being ruined by overcrowding. The holiday experience cannot possibly be enjoyable when you are crushed to a pulp getting onto a ferry to visit a beautiful little island and you can hardly walk when you get off. Arguments and irritations increase, even fights and murder (it happened here).  Rip-offs, scams, and stand-over tactics are used to extract people's cash in restaurants and street carts, not to mention the pickpockets.  Cheng guan and vendors get into serious fights - it's not pretty.  The litter is huge and tour bus, car and people traffic jams abound. We know where not to go in our city during those weeks (most foreigners leave the country, and many Chinese do too and head for the Philippines, Thailand or Vietnam).  I feel sorry for the tourists - I don't know if they enjoyed their holiday at all. 

It would be so much better if the cultural holidays were reduced to a single day on that day and employers could let employees take their holidays at a time of their choosing, spread across the year.  Spring Festival/Chinese New Year of course, has to remain as it is the one time everyone wants to be together.  

National Day at Gulangyu Is,Xiamen

(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)


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Reply Report 财神 2014-4-26 14:42
National Holiday is coming so fast. where did you plan to visit?
Reply Report voice_cd 2014-4-26 15:28
Thanks for your story, we have recommended it.
Reply Report ColinSpeakman 2014-4-26 16:52
There was a start made a few years' back when the May Golden Week was cut back from 5 to 3 days. Obviously the 5 days merged into weekends, so a longer time in practice. Nowadays it is just 3 days but this year the weekend makes it 4 days. It is crazy that so many people travel on same days but the holidays being celebrated are important dates just like holidays in USA. If folks add weekend or personal days, there will still be a lot traveling at same time around the important holiday date. Hard to solve completely.
Reply Report Azindoo 2014-4-26 23:58
The croud has spoiled the spirit of the the holidays as it is meant for relaxation purposes ,over crouding will certainly cause delays on the roads, at tourist sites, etc.
Reply Report Azindoo 2014-4-27 00:00
Over crowding has spoiled the intended holidays making.
Reply Report claudeckenni 2014-5-2 17:43
Yes, OVERCROWDED. That's why I didn't travel this holiday >_<
Reply Report claudeckenni 2014-5-2 17:44
Azindoo: The croud has spoiled the spirit of the the holidays as it is meant for relaxation purposes ,over crouding will certainly cause delays on the roads, a ...
Can't agree more with you, Sir.
Reply Report msbom 2014-5-3 09:40
财神: National Holiday is coming so fast. where did you plan to visit?
It's in full swing now and the massed crowds in matching hats gather about their flag-waving guides to board ferries; the tour bus operators jockey for positions to unload and pick up; strange registration plates swell the car driving populace; lovely young workers and families in pretty clothes pull their luggage about the streets. I just stay home, visit local places I like that tourists don't care about: little known parks, bush walks, bars tucked away in back streets. I still have to fight the traffic jams - every bus or taxi trip (if you can get one) takes two to three times longer than usual unless you leave early.  So mostly I visit places in walking distance ... the weather is great today - sunny, light breeze, all that Xiamen is renowned for (bit hazy though - the vaunted air quality levels are dropping over-all).

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