We Can All Celebrate These 8 Chinese New Year Traditions

Holidays and celebrations abound in Chinese culture, with the Lunar New Year being the most important. Offices and schools in China and Taiwan will be closed for a week, and more than 3.5 billion people—the world’s largest human migration!—are expected to travel to celebrate with their loved ones. The Year of the Rat begins on January 25, 2020, but before you start partying, make sure you follow these traditions to ensure a prosperous year.

Clear the area:

Scrub every nook and cranny of your home to get rid of the trash and bad vibes from the previous year—consider it an early spring cleaning. You must finish your task by New Year’s Day and then put your broom, mop, and vacuum away. Because if you utilise these instruments in the first few days of the New Year, you’ll sweep or suck your luck away.

Also, get your financial house in order:

If you borrowed money from family or friends last year, make sure you pay them back before the New Year; any unpaid loans will bring you bad luck. Make nice if there are any unsolved disagreements or grudges.

Enhance your appearance:

For New Year’s Day, a haircut and a new outfit—red is the most auspicious colour, but if it isn’t your colour, just avoid the unfortunate shades of black and white—are must-haves. Trimming your hair in the first few days of the New Year, like cleaning, will snip away good fortune, so groom properly.

…also your home sweet home:

Decorate your spotless home with a bowl of oranges or apples, or live plants (avoid white flowers because they are connected with funerals). Signs containing Chinese sayings and the character fu, which symbolises good luck, are also common. If you pick the latter, turn them upside down to indicate that success is on the way.

Enjoy a meal with your loved ones:

New Year’s Eve is the most crucial night for coming together. That’s when you meet with your closest friends and family for supper, eating dishes that bring good fortune, such as entire fish, dumplings fashioned like gold or silver ingots, and sticky rice cakes. Because New Year’s is a time when young adults are expected to bring their significant others home for inspection, a flourishing industry of boyfriends and girlfriends for rent has sprung up in China in recent years.

Give without expecting anything in return:

On New Year’s Eve, hong bao—or red envelopes—with a considerable amount of money are given to youngsters, single individuals, and elders, according to custom. But, because to technological advancements, people of different ages and relationships can now send and receive hong bao by text messaging.

Get out there and do it:

The rest of the holiday is dedicated to bonding with your next-level loved ones, while New Year’s Eve is designated for individuals you’re closest to. On social occasions, always bring a gift—tea, fruit, pastries, or chocolates are all options—but under no circumstances should you give four of anything (for example, four canisters of lapsang souchong). “Four” is a homonym for death in Mandarin Chinese.

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