Lunar new year is traditionally a time for Chinese people to reunite with distant relatives after long journeys to ancestral hometowns, but this year more than 6 million are expected to go abroad, according to the Financial Times. This year’s Spring Festival falls on Saturday, when the year of the monkey will give way to that of the rooster. It is one of only two lengthy annual holidays enjoyed by most Chinese people. “For us, the festival is mainly a vacation period,” said a Beijing woman surnamed Qi, who will be in Okinawa, Japan, for the festival, leaving her parents at home. The number of travelers venturing outside the mainland for the festival is expected to break last year’s record of more than 5.7 million, officials say. Travelers are expected to spend more than $14 billion on visits to 174 destinations this season, leaving the country for an average of nine days.
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