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China Daily Website

Survey shows holiday preference

Updated: 2013-12-03 02:18
By Cheng Yingqi ( China Daily)

Most netizens prefer a seven-day holiday for National Day to two other options published by the national holiday authority to solicit public opinion.

On Wednesday, the national holiday office announced three vacation packages and sought public comment. The online survey ended on Sunday, with more than 2 million people voting.

Each of the three options would keep the total number of national holidays at 11 days, with the major difference being alternative packages for the National Day break — of three, five or seven days.

Seven popular websites including people.com.cn, ifeng.com and sina.com.cn carried the online survey.

Fifty-four percent of respondents on people.com.cn supported a seven-day National Day holiday, as did 49.9 percent on sina.com.cn and more than 55 percent on ifeng.com.

However, many netizens were dissatisfied with all three options.

"I don't support any of these packages,"a respondent using the name huaijiaomu wrote on the bulletin board of people.com.cn. "If the authority really wants public opinion, it should first seek opinions on which festivals we should have national holidays for and how many days we should have. Now it stipulates the festivals and the number of national holidays, and only lets us choose from packages that are not too different from each other — this is like asking a monkey whether it wants three dates for breakfast and four for lunch, or four dates for breakfast and three for lunch.”

In 2008, the State Council published a regulation on China's holiday system, which stipulated 11 days of national holidays every year for Spring Festival, National Day, New Year, Chinese Tomb Sweeping Day, Labor Day, Dragon Boat Festival and Mid-Autumn Festival.

The options published by the national holiday office follow the State Council regulation, while also linking national holidays to scheduled weekend days off to extend the time spans.

"The third package is a little better than the others,"wrote a netizen using the name qianli chanjuan, a phrase from a well-known poem about separated families. "But I strongly advise the government to increase the holiday for Spring Festival. For a migrant worker like me, Spring Festival is the only time all year I can travel the long distance back home to rejoin my family, but the seven-day holiday is barely enough for the round-trip."

Cai Jiming, director of the Center for Political Economy at Tsinghua University, said his research team has submitted proposals to authorities to increase the Spring Festival holiday by two days.

"Many people are asking for more holidays at Spring Festival. If we can add two days to the current three-day Spring Festival holiday to make it five days, and on condition Chinese New Year's Eve happens to fall on Monday, adding the two weekends, the length of the holiday would be extended to nine days without the complexity caused by adjusting weekends,"Cai said.



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