Why Are Chinese Restaurants Closed On Tuesdays?


Why Are Chinese Restaurants Closed On Tuesdays?

Tuesday can be a really tough day of the week – it’s not that far into the week, and yet already your boss might be giving you a hard time, and the deadlines are piling up. It’s for this reason that a lot of people choose to opt for a takeout meal on Tuesdays – it can be a tough day, and a tasty treat can make that a little easier!

However, if your favorite takeout place happens to be a Chinese restaurant, then you might have noticed that it’s often closed on a Tuesday! While this could be quite frustrating, most people simply don’t acknowledge it, and move on to order something else. A lot of people don’t order on Tuesdays at all, preferring the weekend for a tasty meal with the whole family!

However, we’re a little bit different, so we fell down something of a rabbit hole, and finally, we got the answer: why are Chinese restaurants closed on Tuesdays?

Why might a restaurant be closed in the week?

Before we get straight into the real reason that Chinese restaurants are most commonly closed on Tuesdays, let’s discuss a few other reasons that your favorite noodle spot might not be open on a Tuesday!

Religious day

This is the most common reason that a business might be closed, particularly if the business is largely run by a particular ethnicity. A great example of this could be when curry houses are closed for Ramadan, or offer a particular celebration for Eid – if the cuisine in question is largely prepared and eaten by Muslim people, then it’s likely that the restaurant will have some reduced opening hours during and around Ramadan.

This is something that we largely take for granted in more Western countries, but typically, very few (or no) businesses are open on Christmas day. In fact, supermarkets in the UK often pride themselves on having no days closed aside from Christmas Day itself. They may operate on shorter hours during the Christmas season, but they will typically totally close on the day itself.

The convenient thing about this arrangement, in our modern multicultural society, is that very few holidays overlap in a very big way. This is often seen in the US, when a lot of different food spots are closed during Thanksgiving, but a lot of Chinese food places are still open – they will often remain open because immigrants that have recently moved to the country and are running a Chinese place will not be celebrating Thanksgiving, therefore it means little for them to be open on just another day.


Some spots might select a day not to open because it’s simply not profitable for them to get the restaurant shipshape and tidy over the course of a whole day. This can be seen more in the modern world where fuel costs seem to be continuously rising – if you’re a business that relies on running several hot ovens for several hours every single day, then you might be out of luck.

At the end of the day, a lot of businesses might run the numbers, and compare how much they spent on keeping the lights, ovens, etc on, and how much they made in sales. If it turns out that they’re too quiet to actually turn a profit on a certain day, then they may well just not open up at all going forward.

This can be quite frustrating for some people, most commonly in a very small community – if there are only two cafes in town, and one closes every day aside from the weekend, then it can seem like you’ve only really got one cafe worth going to.

Most convenient

One of the most important thing to think about when running a business is the happiness and wellbeing of your staff. As such, you might want to make sure that they have at least one or two days off in a week.

Therefore, if you’re a manager looking at a list of the profits that you make on each day of the week, and considering which day it might be most convenient to close on, then you might land on Tuesday!

Compared to other days of the week, you wouldn’t be losing very much money at all, and you would still be able to give your staff a whole day off – this is an invaluable thing to most people!

Why are Chinese restaurants closed on Tuesdays?

Well, to put it simply, Chinese restaurants are closed on Tuesdays because it’s the handiest day for them to close. By this, we mean that the staff of a restaurant will typically want to spend time away from their work, so that they can socialize, spend time with their family, etc.

Therefore, from the point of view of a manager, the most convenient day to make that happen is a Tuesday – plenty of people order a takeaway on the weekend, and even on a Monday, but comparatively few people will order a takeaway meal on Tuesdays.

This means that it’s essentially a combination of two different factors – the staff would like a day off, and Tuesdays are the least profitable days in the week. Therefore, to keep everyone happy and lose as little money as possible, a manager might select Tuesday as the best day in the week to keep people off.


No one is totally sure quite why Tuesday was the day that was selected as the day that a Chinese takeaway would close, way back when the first Chinese takeaways were opened, but it’s most likely the reasons that we laid out above. Since then, Tuesday has simply been the most common day for Chinese restaurants to be closed, so continuing in with that trend has been a great way for many Chinese spots to stay in business.