The effects of a relaxing holiday can unfortunately be negated by the drive home.
Or so millions of Chinese discovered in Beijing on Tuesday, when traffic snarls that gave new meaning to the words "Great Wall of China" dumped them back into real life.
According to the China Tourism Academy, more than 532 million domestic trips were expected to be made over the seven days of China's Golden Week holiday starting Oct 1.
Around 10.8 million railway passenger trips were made on Monday, and the number of travellers was even higher on Tuesday and Wednesday, according to the China Railway Corp, which scheduled hundreds of extra train trips to meet the surge in demand.
As the two longest national holidays in China, the National Day holiday in October and the week-long Spring Festival around the Chinese New Year have become synonymous with the stress of travel.