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Mid-Autumn Festival 2022: Why Is Moon Festival So Early in 2022?

Mid-Autumn Festival 2022: Why Is Moon Festival So Early in 2022?

Written by CindyUpdated Sep. 2, 2022

Mid-Autumn Festival, Zhongqiu Jie (中秋节) in Chinese, also known as the Mooncake Festival or Moon Festival, is one of China’s biggest holidays. The festival is a joyous celebration with family reunions, mooncakes, parades, and lanterns.

In 2022, Mid-Autumn Festival falls on September 10th (Saturday).  

Mid-Autumn Festival is also a popular observance in many other Asian countries such as Japan, Korea, Malaysia, and Singapore, but with different names. The festival date in these countries is the same as in China (September 10th in 2022).

Mid-Autumn Festival Dates and Holidays in 2022, 2023, 2024...

Mid-Autumn Festival is held on the 15th day of the 8th month of the Chinese calendar, which is in September or early October on the Gregorian calendar. 

Year Date Public Holiday
2021 September 21 (Tuesday) Sep. 19 to 21
2022 September 10 (Saturday) Sep. 10 to 12
2023 September 29 (Friday) Sep. 29 
2024 September 17 (Tuesday) Sep. 17 to 18 
2025 October 6 (Monday) Oct. 6
2026 September 25 (Friday) Sep. 25

In the Chinese mainland, people usually have a three-day public holiday for Mid-Autumn Festival (using 2 weekend days for 5-day week workers, so it only uses one day of statutory holiday).

In Hong Kong and Macau, the day after the Mid-Autumn Festival is a public holiday rather than the festival date itself (unless that date falls on a Sunday, then Monday is also a holiday), because many celebration events are held at night.

In Singapore and Malaysia, the Moon Festival is not a public holiday officially. 

How Is Mid-Autumn Festival's Date Determined?

Mid-Autumn Festival is held on the 15th of the 8th lunar month in the Chinese calendar, within half a lunar month of the autumn equinox (from about Sep. 6 to Oct. 6).

On the Chinese lunar calendar, the 8th month is the middle month of autumn and the 15th is its middle day. As, traditionally, the four seasons each have three lunar months, day 15 of month 8 is "the middle of autumn". So it got its name. 

The date of the festival is a full moon, and that is why it is also called the Moon Festival. On the 15th of each lunar calendar month, the moon is at its roundest and brightest, symbolizing togetherness and reunion in Chinese culture.

Why Is Mid-Autumn Festival So Early in 2022?

As a lunar month is on average 0.92 days shorter than a "solar month", the lunar calendar is just under a day per month slower than the solar calendar. To prevent the lunar calendar from becoming more than half a month of sync with the solar calendar, an extra "leap month" is added in the Chinese calendar every 32 or 33 months. 

Due to the leap month, the Gregorian calendar date corresponding to the Mid-Autumn Festival is always either about 11 days earlier or about 19 days later than the earlier year. This year, for example, Mid-Autumn falls on September 10, 11 days earlier than last year. Next year's Mid-Autumn Festival will be 19 days later.

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What to Expect for Mid-Autumn Festival 2022

Mid-Autumn Festival 2022 in China

People will reunite with their families and friends, and see lanterns lit, buy and exchange mooncakes, visit temples, and attend celebration events.

In cities such as Beijing and Shanghai, there will be lantern exhibitions with traditional stage shows. See more Mid-Autumn Festival traditions in China

Mid-Autumn Festival 2022 in Singapore

People can enjoy the traditional Chinese lanterns on show in Chinatown, wander around Gardens by the Bay to enjoy its exhibition of Chinese lanterns, or watch a staged performance of the traditional story of Chang’e at the Singapore Botanic Gardens. See more information about Mid-Autumn Festival in Singapore

Mid-Autumn Festival 2022 in Malaysia

In Kuala Lumpur, there will be dragon and lion dances, artists and youngsters performing dances and songs, and floats carrying the seven maidens including Chang’e in the lantern carnival. The Mid-Autumn Festival Lantern Show will also be held at Thean Hou Temple.

In Penang, the ‘River of Lights’ lantern parade will be held in Georgetown. Besides the lantern parades, locals will also perform traditional lion dances and wushu (martial arts). See more details about Mooncake Festival in Malaysia

Want to share the Mid-Autumn Festival story with your family? The 3-minute video below will show you all about it.

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