What Is a “Holiday” for a Chinese Person?

About us: WeChat official account: Ringyringy provides FREE interpretation for expats in China. Follow Ringy, send Ringy WeChat messages, tell us whatever you need help with. National holiday is approaching, many of you might be wondering what it would be like to travel with a Chinese person. Traveling with a Chinese person would surely offer a new kind of cultural experience. Let’s examine some general differences you might discover.
1.What do Chinese people DO on a holiday?
For Chinese people it’s more likely to be a fully scheduled itinerary than a lazy holiday! They treat it as a serious matter.
They plan everything, even including the restaurants they will visit. Taking a few pictures of the food and themselves adds a bit flavor to the trip! Be ready to see surprisingly good pictures taken by your Chinese friends because they are the app masters!
They check out every agency they know and a tour visitingall possible attractions is best! They wouldn’t mind if this is 走马观花 (zǒu mǎ guān huā), literally meaning, “looking at flowers while riding a horse”. In other words, just getting a glimpse of as many different things as possible. The fuller the schedule is, the better.
If they don’t book with a travel agency, they may do tons of homework for their trip at least one to three months ahead of time. In China there are websites that offer holiday service packages and forums where people can get some inspiration to plan their trip. If you are wondering where you can go for this kind of information, please check out our latest solution: [Solutions] to the Most-Asked Questions on Ringy: Volume Four.
Completing a tripplan always feels like an achievement! Start planning your earlier.
2.Shopping or cultural experience?
Don’t be surprised when you see how many suitcases of luggage they bring to the airport.Chinese tourists are like Santa Clause—they buy gifts during the trip and send these gifts to their family and friends. During most of the trips arranged by travel agencies, there is always one day specifically for shopping.
What do Chinese people usually buy during the trip? Well, souvenir markets are especially interesting and surprising, and Chinese people usually get stuff that they think their family or friends would love, or something that would surprise them.
3. People or views?
Chinese people like taking pictures like everyone does, but they might be more obsessed with taking pictures of themselves as a record of the trip. If you are frequently asked for help with taking a picture of them, please understand and do them a favor: make a face and take a picture of the moment they laugh at your face! Remember, they would like to be the center of the photo, not lost in the background like the picture below:


4. Be safe and traditional, or adventure?
Hitchhiking is something that is relatively more common in some western countries but you would rarely see it in China. However, Chinese people have been relying a lot on Uber and Didi’s car hailing services which offer a good combination of convenience and safety.
Spending the night on a stranger’s couch is being embraced by more and more Chinese young people but they still prefer to stay at a hotel where they can have a bit more private space.
Unless there were somebody in the group who knew of a particular place, Chinese people would usually refuse to change their lodging arrangements on short notice. Chinese people are usually flexible but this would be one of the very few cases in which Chinese people would stick to their plan strictly.
In summary, if you would like to change your travel style and have a rich experience of a Chinese city, why don‘t you embrace the cultural differences by planning your trip with a Chinese friend?! Let Ringy know when you need translation help!
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