Chinese people stay put during the Chinese Spring Festival

People from Nanchang City have celebrated Lunar New Year a little differently this year after having to comply with Covid 19 regulations.

Unlike normal years when people would visit relatives, this year people chose to stay in their homes over the period.

Starting from 11 February, the Chinese New Year’s Eve, Chinese people began to celebrate the Spring Festival, the biggest holiday in China. 

Yutong Han, 24, a Nanchang girl studied at Macao University of Science and Technology, said: “I decided to stay in Macao rather than returning to Nanchang because I worried about the potential risk of the outbreak of COVID during holiday though there are nearly no cases in China now.” 

Qiang Tu, 44, a merchant whose hometown is Nanchang, but who works in Yancheng, Jiangsu Province, said he had his own reasons for not moving around.

He said: “ My children’s primary school encouraged us to stay here, both to prevent the spread COVID and the possible change of quarantine measures. ”

Chinese people spend the Spring Festival in many traditional ways. Such as cooking up a big dinner for the family reunion on Chinese New year’s eve and giving children red envelopes full of money.

Staying in different places, missing their relatives and favorite home-cooked Nanchang dishes, these people trying to celebrate this Spring Festival more meaningful.

Yutong said she spent the festival with her friends in her current accommodation rather than travelling across the country to be with her family.

She said: “My friends and I bundled together for Spring Festival, eating New Year’s Eve dinner cooked by ourselves, and done some shopping online.”

“Though I really missed my family and hometown, I don’t feel much sad because we got reunion via Wechat video call. Additionally, I can experience some local customs in Macao, which will be an unforgettable memory in my life.”

For those who opted to stay in Nanchang instead of returning to their own hometowns, the government also rolled out policies to make them spend this Spring Festival feeling at home as soon as possible.

An official of official of Wanli County in a county of Nanchang said: “All migrant workers who staying put during the festival can visit most of the scenic areas for free.” 

Written by Rui Li

Student journalist at The University of Sheffield

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