What is National Day in China?

September 26, 2019

Maybe you're new to China, or perhaps you are a seasoned China pro. Either way, you probably know about the upcoming week-long holiday for National Day in China. Since it is just around the corner, we wanted to share with you some of the history of China's National Day , and help you master a few useful celebratory phrases in Chinese!

When is National Day in China and why is it celebrated?

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The official National Day is October 1, and the holiday is observed from October 1-7. National Day marks the founding of the People's Republic of China (PRC) on October 1, 1949.

Is this year special?

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2019 marks the 70th anniversary of the founding of the PRC! Seventy is a big birthday!

What is “Golden Week”?

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Golden Week is a national holiday for which people have seven or eight days off in a row.Usually this term is used in reference to the National Day period of October 1-7, though it can also be used for the weeklong Chinese New Year celebration as well.

How do people celebrate National Day in China?

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People often travel back to their hometowns or go on family trips for the holiday. Popular activities include flag-raising ceremonies, fireworks, performances, and parades.

Cool! Where should I go during Golden Week?

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We recommend either going abroad or staying at home. The National Day week is a very popular time to travel; tourist sites will be packed, modes of transportation will be crowded, and tickets will be expensive.
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If you must travel, book all your tickets and hotels in advance, and try to avoid travelling on the first and the last days of the holiday.
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If you stay home, be prepared to cook. Many restaurants and shops will close for Golden Week.

How early should I get my tickets?

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As early as possible! Train tickets become available about 40 days before the day of travel, so you and everyone else may need to engage in “grabbing tickets”, or qiǎng piào 抢票.
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This is the process during which masses of people flood the ticket booths and online ticket platforms trying to get a ticket on their preferred train.
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Obviously, sleepers and seats are the first to go, so latecomers may only have the option to book a standing ticket (if there are any tickets left at all).

National Day Vocabulary

国庆节
guóqìng jié
National Day
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十一
shíyī
October 1st
(in other contexts, this means “11”) 
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国庆节快乐!
Guóqìng jié kuàilè!
Happy National Day!
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.黄金周
huángjīn zhōu
Golden Week 
烟火
yānhuǒ
fireworks
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升旗仪式
shēngqí yíshì
flag-raising ceremony
..
抢票
qiǎng piào
to “grab” tickets

Happy National Day everyone!

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