Time Zones in China

Time Zones in China – What to Know

We all know that Russia (俄国 – Éguó*) is the largest country in the world with approximately 17,098,242 square kilometers. It covers more than one-eighth of the Earths’ inhabited land and boasts an impressive 11 time zones (时区 – shíqū*). It’s neighbor China (中国 – Zhōngguó*) has with 9,596,960 square kilometers roughly the size of the continental United States (美国 – Měiguó*) and is approximately three times bigger than India (印度 – Yìndù*). Compared to Russia, it only boasts 8 different time zones, but it has only one official time zone: Běijīng (北京*) Standard Time (as it is referred to domestically) or China Standard Time (as it is referred to internationally).

*You can’t read Chinese characters and don’t know how to read these kinds of words we use in the brackets?

It’s Pinyin (拼音 – Pīnyīn). Pinyin is the official romanization system that people use for Standard Chinese. It helps you to learn how to read Chinese characters and also to type in words on your laptop. As we know how difficult the right pronunciation of Chinese words can be, we created a Pinyin Course at TutorMandarin, especially for Newbies. We also offer HSK based Courses for every further level, like Beginner (I & II) to Advanced (I & II). Sign up for a Free Trial to learn Mandarin online and check out our 1-on-1 high professional lessons with your own tutor. Wherever, whenever. TutorMandarin doesn’t care about time zones and time differences. We will be available whenever you want to take a class. So, sign up for a Free Trial to learn Mandarin right here, or at the bottom of this post.

Why does China has only one official time zone?

It simply has a historical reason:

After the fall of the Qing Dynasty in 1912, the new Republic of China established 5 different time zones across the country. But in 1949, as the Communist Party gained control of the Country, Chairman Mao Zedong declared all of China would be on Beijing time, for the purposes of national unity.

How do Chinese provinces deal with time zones? 

Well, for most people it is just a mild inconvenience, but in Xīnjiāng (新疆)  is poses a proper problem.

For example, if you’re in the far west of China in the Xīnjiāng (新疆) province, you can enjoy a beautiful sunset at midnight in the summer. And in the winter you wake up with a sunrise at 10am.

Just imagine: If you want to make an appointment for a telephone, it doesn’t matter, if you are on the east coast in Běijīng (北京), or in the western part of China in Xīnjiāng (新疆). Even though there is essentially a 3 hour time difference, both parties will be at their desks to make a telephone call at the same time.

Interesting fact, isn’t it? Are you interested in any other topics related to China? We know, there are a lot more things about the Chinese language, which is really interesting.  Sign up our free trial to learn Mandarin and download the Chinese App for more Chinese language materials and to learn Mandarin online.

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