The year is starting to end, and Q4 is just around the corner. During this time, the Chinese people will celebrate a few important national holidays, which will affect, any aspects of business management, including employee, financial, and logistics services in China. If you wish to go through the period smoothly and know about certain dates ahead of time, we’ve put together a brief guide that reviews the major holidays and dates in Q4, vacation and observance days, and tips for a successful operation.
Mid-Autumn Festival, Zhōngqiūjié 10-12.9.2022
- Total vacation days: Three
- When local employees resume work: September 13th
The mid-autumn festival usually takes place during Q4. However, because China celebrates its holidays according to the lunar calendar, the holiday will occur this year at the end of Q3.
In Chinese tradition, the Mid-Autumn Festival is considered the second most important holiday after the Chinese New Year (Spring Festival). Initially, this holiday marked the end of the harvest season and was dedicated to thanksgiving to the gods, nowadays it is dedicated mostly to family time. Also, it is traditional to eat moon cakes during the Mid-Autumn Festival, so it might be a good idea to mark this date down and remember to send some cake to your workers and colleagues, a nice gesture that can strengthen your relationship and make Chinese workers feel at home even if they work for an international company.
China’s National Day, Guóqìngjié 1-7.10.2022
- Total vacation days: Seven
- When local employees resume work: October 8th
China’s biggest national holiday is celebrated every year on October 1st – the date of the declaration of the People’s Republic of China in 1949. It is one of the two holidays when local employees enjoy an extended vacation, known as “Golden Week.” During Golden Week, celebrations take place all over the country, and many people rush to the train stations and start their way to reunite with their families. During this week, you can expect delays.
11.11- China’s Singles’ Day
Singles’ Day is the Chinese version of Black Friday in the USA, the main difference of course being the date and the fact that the holiday sales are online- men, women, single and married alike, flock to the e-commerce sites, and have a shopping spree. This day is dedicated to shopping and has become so extensive, that it has become the biggest shopping day in the world. From a marketing perspective, China’s Singles’ Day is a great opportunity for international brands to sell on various Chinese e-commerce platforms. We at PTL Group invite health, wellness, and beauty brands to join our digital store and achieve their sales potential in China through e-commerce services.
Some important information to remember before the holiday:
Every year many businesses around China close for a whole week during China’s National Day, and as a result, the national holiday has a significant impact on doing business in China. The holiday completely interrupts the regular work week, exactly at the beginning of Q4. So, here are some critical tips for successful business operation in China over the national holiday period:
Human Resources & Employment in China: When recruiting and hiring employees in China, it is important to remember that the winter period (October-February) is the most difficult recruiting season. Employees prefer to change jobs only after receiving the annual Chinese New Year bonus. However, this is a good time frame to start the process of recruitment in China, including background checks on candidates and giving yourself enough time in advance for any unwanted surprises and to find the right candidates. Read more on our HR services in China.
Financial Management: The last months of the year are an excellent time to start preparing for all the paperwork you need to submit for the end of the year. It is advisable to start collecting all the necessary documents in advance. Many international companies prefer to use a 3rd party service provider for accounting in China and additional financial services in China in order to not leave any room for mistakes.
Logistics in China: In the weeks leading up to the holiday season, factory output declines, and alongside the workers’ long vacation, the supply chain management in China changes. Therefore, to save time, delays, and headaches, companies in China must logistically prepare ahead of time. For instance, it is advisable to pre-order enough inventory for the entire quarter and checks the stages of production, transportation, and delivery of the products relative to the holiday dates. It would be best to sort shipments by “urgent” and “non-urgent” and prioritize them accordingly. Before the holiday, planning the deliveries for the period after the holiday can help the employees continue working immediately and return to work smoothly.
Ideas for happy hours for your staff:
China does not have many holidays with vacations, but that does not mean that there are no special dates in the Lunar calendar. Here are some special observance days for you to know to celebrate with your staff, either during happy hour or even after work hours:
4/10/22 – Chongyang festival or the Double Ninth Festival,
Chóng Yáng Jié:
- Happy hour activity: Cocktail party with chrysanthemum flower liquor
- Group activity: go hiking
Chongyang Festival also known as The Double Ninth Festival celebrates the cleansing of anger before the new year. Many commemorate the old tradition of climbing up a mountain on this day by eating Chongyang cakes, drinking chrysanthemum flower liquor, and buying chrysanthemum flowers to enjoy around your house.
You might want to put this date in your calendar for an office happy hour cocktail mixer, combining chrysanthemum flower liquor in many cool and celebratory cocktails. Or, maybe plan and have the office get some fresh air and honor the day with a hike, helping strengthen your staff’s relationship.
22/12/22- Dongzhi Festival or Winter Solstice Festival:
- Happy hour activity: Rice wine coolers
- Group activity: Dumplings workshop
Dongzhi Festival celebrates the arrival of winter, and it is celebrated during the winter solstice, the longest night of the year. Even though it is not a holiday, as an employer with Chinese workers, you might want to remember this date for a celebratory dumpling workshop to help with morale around the office. Usually, one would celebrate this day by drinking rice wine and eating festive dumplings.
30/12/22- Laba Festival:
- Happy hour activity: Porridge buffet
- Group activity: Meditation circle
The Laba Festival- the day of enlightenment, remarks the start of celebrations for the Chinese New Year. The Laba festival is celebrated on the eighth day of the last lunar month, as it commemorates the day Sakyamuni (Buddha) attained enlightenment. This might be a good chance for your employees to be in the right spirit for a seminar about work-life balance, and have a day of serenity and meditation, especially before the new year.
During this Festival it is a custom to eat porridge, as a remembrance of Sakyamuni who once mediated for so long, that he forgot to eat and the porridge saved him, so you might also want to have a happy hour filled with festive porridge to get your team smiling and happy before the end of the year.
As things remain uncertain regarding China’s Covid policy this upcoming year, leaving the business world facing some challenges, our business services in China remain strong and enable international companies to manage their activities in the Chinese market remotely. Contact us, and we will be happy to help you as well.