Dragon dance during Chinese New Year Festival
Chinese New Year is the most important festival in China. Also known as the Spring Festival, it celebrates the turn of the new year according to the traditional Chinese calendar. The Chinese New Year is centuries old and is one of the world's most prominent and celebrated festivals.
The Spring Festival holiday only last a week, but most factories are closed for a month. Because Chinese New Year is the most important period for Chinese, they often extend their holidays in order to spend more time with their relatives. Everyone working in China is aware of the Chinese New Year and the production disruption it will cause, but many importers are caught off guard.
The exact date varies each year since it's based on the Lunar Calendar, but it's usually around January and February. It usually last 30 days, 10 days before Chinese New Year and 20 days after.
Most suppliers will not accept new orders few weeks before Chinese New Year. Even samples orders will not be accepted. This is not always in your suppliers direct control, if one their component/material subcontractor close their doors earlier then the whole production chain will be disrupted.
It is better to confirm with your supplier their schedule or at least try to order before end of December because all suppliers are closed during Chinese New Year.
It is also not advised to pay a deposit before Chinese New Year, this does not guarantee that you'll get your order faster and, even worse, a supplier who wish to close permanently will most likely do it during this period.
Guangzhou train station during Chinese New Year
Despite their struggle to get back to a normal mode of operation your supplier will be most likely be available to handle administrative task few days after Chinese New Year Eve.
But most workers from factories will only come back after Yuan Xiao, which is the 15th of the Chinese Calendar. Some of them even take this opportunity to quit their job without any prior announcement. Factories then have to wait for their workers to come back and/or to hire new manpower to start the production.
Besides the large number of orders they stacked up during this period, the previous skilled staff is more or less replaced with rookies. This is why the risk of quality issues is higher after the end of Chinese New year. And plenty of suppliers use the Pre/Post Chinese New Year stress as an excuse for being slow and providing poor service.
Don't forget to get your goods checked during this period, you can hire a sourcing agent to help you with this task.
Chinese New Year 2017 migration map
March 04, 2018 by Nicole
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