Traditionally, it was customary for people to spend Chinese New Year’s Eve and the first two days of the New Year with family. By days three and four, things could – quite understandably – start getting a bit tense. To avoid arguments, it was considered best to avoid relatives on the third and fourth days of the New Year.
Traditionally, Chinese New Year celebrations continued through Day 15, when the Lantern Festival was held.
In mainland China, many people get a full week off, with some factories with large numbers of migrant workers closing down for two weeks. In Taiwan, New Year’s Eve and the first three days are public holidays. In Hong Kong and Macau, the first three days are public holidays. In Malaysia and Singapore, people get the first two days off. In Brunei and Indonesia, only Chinese New Year Day itself is an official holiday.
Because Chinese New Year fell on a Sunday this year, many people in Hong Kong and Macau feel a bit short-changed. I’m sure that this will be a hot topic of discussion when people start returning to work tomorrow.
Copyright: Michael Taylor
Pictured: Summer Palace Chinese Restaurants
Photo Courtesy of Shangri-La, Guangzhou, China