Top 5 Tips For Chinese New Year Travel

Written by Sally Guo Updated Apr. 8, 2021

Is it worth going to China during Spring Festival? Well, traveling to China during the period of Chinese New Year has both advantages and disadvantages. It is wise to weigh up if the advantages outweigh the disadvantages.

1. Try to Avoid Traveling by Rail.

Try to avoid traveling by rail as trains will be crowded during the period of the Spring Rush (Chunyun). Train tickets will be sold out very quickly.

2. Arrange Your Itinerary Beforehand.

Arrange your itinerary beforehand and make reservations for flights and hotels in advance.

3. Take Part in Some Traditional New Year Celebrations.

Collect as much information on Chinese New Year celebrations in the city you are going to stay, such as firework shows, temple fairs, and other celebrative activities for the locals.

4. Bring Enough Warm Clothes

 Bring enough warm clothes as Chinese New Year usually comes on the coldest days of the year in China.

6. Chinese people prepare a lot of luxurious and delicious food during the Spring Festival, what they eat is rich in calories, and people may get sick from having too much Chinese New Year food. It'd be better to prepare some medicines in advance and try to have good control of the temptation of the delicacies.

5. Know the Spring Festival Travel Period before Your trip

Get to know the Chinese spring festival travel period before to avoid any unpleasant surprises on your trip. 

2023 Spring Festival Travel Period

Dates in 2023 Activities at Home and on the Streets Transportation At Work/What's Open
Jan 21 - 22 Houses and streets cleaning and decorating, shopping, school holidays from Jan. 1 Crazy crowded: homeward travel rush Year-end events, winding down
Jan. 21 (CNY's Eve) Decorations, family reunion dinner, CCTV New Year Gala, fireworks Locally busy Businesses closed in the afternoon
Jan.22 (CNY's Day) Firecrackers, greetings, lucky money Relatively quiet Offices/banks shut, shops and malls reopen
Jan. 23 Welcoming sons-in-law with dinner and gifts Locally busy Shops and malls open, offices/banks not
Jan. 24-27 Visiting relatives and friends Locally busy Limited offices/banks services, shops, and malls open
Jan. 28 The week-long public holiday period ends; most people prepare to go back to work. Very busy: city return journeys Some businesses reopen one day early.
Jan. 28 - Feb. 5  (CNY days 7-15) Life returns to normal; schools reopen after Feb. 5; decorations up until Lantern Festival (Feb. 5). Crazy busy: return journey rush Business as normal by Jan. 29 (CNY Day 8)

FAQs about Chinese New Year

day 2

1. Can I travel to China during the Chinese New Year?
Yes, of course. But you have to face a big crowd of people who head back to their hometowns. Airports, railway stations, and coach stations are full of people. And the price of transport is more expensive than usual. But the situation will be much better after Chinese New Year's Eve.

2. Which places are warm destinations to experience the Chinese New Year?
Yunnan Province in Southwestern China, and Sanya, Hong Kong in the south of China.

3. Whether I need to book in advance during the holiday?
Yes, for sure. It is wise to book hotels and flight tickets two months in advance. Four months in advance is even not a bad idea. However, last-minute bookings won't be a big problem with a higher payment.

4. Is everything closed during the Chinese New Year?
No. Most restaurants, attractions, hotels, and airports won't be closed. But the working hours will be limited and shortened.

5. What is closed during the Chinese New Year?
Government offices, factories such as clothing factories, some small restaurants, and shops will be closed.

6. Can I eat out on New Year's Eve?
Yes. Booking in advance is the best way. Some restaurants and hotels offer a unique meal for New Year's Eve. If you want to have a traditional Chinese New Year's Eve meal, just book it ahead.

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