3 Reasons Why Halloween Has Become So Popular in China!

It's going to be Halloween soon. Many of my foreign Chinese language students are surprised that we Chinese celebrate Western-style Halloween so enthusiastically in Chinese cities today. I will try to explain a few important reasons in todays lesson!

In fact, China has its own traditional version of Halloween, the Ghost Festival of Chinese Taoism each July.

 Happy Halloween 

gu ji

Ghost Festival

w cng li b gu gu ji. 


I never celebrate Ghost Festival.

nng l q yu sh w sh zhng gu de gu ji. 


The fifteenth of lunar July is the Chinese Ghost Festival.

On a lighter note, Western Halloween, or (wn shng ji), does not contain serious family traditions or somber feelings. Its a fun event that brings laughs, smiles and exciting screams! The images of jack-o-lanterns, children trick-or-treating and ghost stories are famous in China.

 Happy Halloween 

(wn shng ji)

Western Halloween

xio hi men x hun zi wn shng ji de sh hu zu nn gu dng.

Children like to make pumpkin lanterns during Halloween.

wn shng ji sh w zu x hun de ji r.
Halloween is my favorite holiday.

So, why does Western Halloween, or (wn shng ji), along with its ghosts, witches, pumpkins and costumes seem so appealing to young Chinese today?

 Happy Halloween 

Lets look at 3 reasons why Western (wn shng ji) Halloween is so popular today in China:

1. Chinese Ghost Festival is serious, Western Halloween is fun

Many Chinese holidays are actually quite serious and gloomy, with respectful and somber worship of ancestors being part of the tradition, not a celebration the way that many Western holidays unfold. In fact, during the Chinese (gu ji) Ghost Festival, families will build lanterns and boats to honor deceased relatives. The success of the paper crafts journey will determine the fate of the ancestors spirits. Its quite a serious matter!

Western Halloween, or (wn shng ji), is a much more fun and carefree holiday. While Chinese Ghost Festival is spent with family, for young Chinese Western Halloween is an opportunity to celebrate with friends and colleagues. Instead of worshipping family, the celebration is lighthearted and fun. Growing up, many Chinese see Halloween celebrations in movies and on TV shows such as Friends. Watching others dress up in silly costumes and have a party seems fun to us, so we usually jump on the opportunity to join the party if we can!

2. China is becoming more international every year

More and more young Chinese are studying abroad and bringing western interests back to China with them. In addition, more foreign travelers, students and workers are living in China now, bring these traditions with them. At the same time, young Chinese are watching popular Western TV shows and movies, many of which are set during holidays such as Halloween and Christmas. Chinas growing engagement with the rest of the world over past decades has brought some interesting new opportunities to Chinas youth, just as New Yorkers now have more access to true Chinese restaurants opening up there each year. Likewise, the Chinese are importing some new traditions in!

3. Businesses are cashing in on the holiday craze and promoting Western holidays for business purposes

Although there may be no snow during Christmas season in Shanghai or Shenzhen, you will certainly find Santa Claus in the shopping malls there! Embracing Western holidays is an opportunity for businesses or run promotions and have special deals, attracting Chinese customers to their shops with opportunities to spend money and purchase new items. Many restaurants, amusement parks, bars and nightclubs will have special events to bring in customers at times when attendance may be low otherwise.

 Happy Halloween 

So, now you know why young Chinese are increasingly celebrating Western Halloween. Its all in fun!

Here is a question for you :

Which of the following is NOT the reason that Chinese are celebrating Western (wnshngji) Halloween?

A. Young Chinese want to honor their ancestors

B. Shops and bars use the opportunities to run special promotions during this time of year

C. Western Halloween is a fun reason for friends to get together and do something different

D. China is becoming a more international country, with increasing foreign cultural options


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