Imagine 1.4 billion people travelling together in a country for new year festivities? Well, welcome to China’s Spring Festival Rush.
The Spring Festival Rush is an annual Chinese festival characterized by booked out trains, clogged transport system, and a seemingly endless hoard of travelers. Traditionally, Spring Festival Rush begins 15 days ahead of the Chinese New Year and 25 days after, lasting a total of 40 days. Spring Festival Rush 2018 begins from February 1 and ends on March 12.
Here, we bring you 5 interesting facts about the Spring Festival Rush or otherwise known as Chunyun.
#1. It’s the world’s biggest human migration
Chunyun is the largest human migration on earth. Crunch the numbers, and be in utter bewilderment. During this period, millions of Chinese travel home for the Lunar New Year. This clocks 2.98 billion trips with the average traveller covering around 410 km. Can you beat that?
#2. Important season for family and businesses
Family holds prime importance during the Spring Festival Rush. However, during the Chunyun festival, business is always on the high. The greatest beneficiaries of this business boom are the travel industry and the food industry. Lofty feasts are prepared to cater for the festive family homecoming.
#3. It’s rooted in Chinese astrology
The Spring Festival Rush is deeply rooted in Chinese astrology. Chinese astrology is marked by 12 zodiac signs. In chronological order, the 12 animals in the Chinese zodiac are Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, Pig. In China, each year is closely associated with a zodiac animal. It is interesting to know that 2018, according to the Chinese calendar, is the year of the Dog. Wuff! Wuff!! Wuff!!!
#4. Security is pretty tight
Teeming crowds can pose a security challenge but not during the Spring Festival Rush. During “Chunyun,” security is always on high alert. Expect to see armed policemen, railway security guards, and volunteers at railway stations and strategic locations in downtown China.
#5. Food holds spiritual significance
During the Spring Festival Rush, food is a uniting factor and equally holds spiritual significance. Notable among foods considered to bring good fortune are dumplings, fish, spring rolls, noodles, tangerines, oranges, pomeloes, and niangao (glutinous rice cake). These foods are believed to bring prosperity, good health, wealth, happiness, prosperity, and family unity.
So, what do you think about the yearly Chinese Festival Travel Season? Would you love to travel to China during Chunyun? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section.