HK101: Lucky Chinese New Year Greetings to Try Out This Year
February 01, 2024
Chinese New Year is almost upon us, and most locals are gearing up to get together with our families over a healthy helping of food. While there’s plenty of things to do during the auspicious holiday – feasting with the family included, of course - the main purpose of Chinese New Year is to welcome the new cycle on the lunar calendar– for a bright look ahead.
Celebrating with your family also comes with its own set of perks… namely, a fresh haul of red pocket money. In the age-old tradition of greeting your elders with Chinese New Year greetings, you’d be lucky to find a glimmering red pocket held out in front of you as a more than welcome response.
For non-Chinese people celebrating Chinese New Year, these greetings would be helpful to know in order to interact with friends and colleagues throughout the holidays. You’ll receive as much of these blessings as you give, so don’t be shy and try a few of these greetings out yourself!
Gong Hei Faat Choy
Meaning: Wishing you wealth and prosperity
Gong Hei Faat Choy is perhaps the most common phrase you will come across during Chinese New Year, with hawkers and street vendors greeting their customers with a gleeful smile as they exchange the pleasantry. It’s common to greet the people you interact with on a daily basis with this adage, like your neighbour or doorman. It can be followed up with another wish and greeting, such as Sun Tai Gin Hong to mean (Stay healthy).
Swap out your ‘hellos’ with Gong Hei Faat Choy for the Chinese New Year, and get blessed in return!
Sum Seung Si Seng
Meaning: Whatever the heart desires will happen
This sentiment speaks from one heart to another, and its’ also incredibly versatile! No doubt you’d want to wish your family and close friends for all their deepest hopes to come true – but you can also say the same to people you don’t know on an intimate basis. No matter what their goals are this year, its’ always a good feeling to know that you are being cheered on.
Dai Gut Dai Le
Meaning: Good luck and may things go smoothly
Good luck is hard to come by, but you can make it a little easier for those around you by sending it their way. If you have any friends born in the Year of the Dragon, consider sending them a little extra luck this year – seeing as any year of your Chinese Zodiac is regarded as a bad luck year. This also applies for friends and loved ones who are considering entering a new chapter of their lives, be it a new career, marriage, the birth of a child, or relocation.
Jiu Cho Jun Bo
Meaning: May Wealth Come to You Generously
ABBA once said, “Money, money, money – always sunny” and they aren’t wrong. Everyone and their mother loves money, with good reason too. For those in your life looking to move forward in their career, or to hit it big at the lotto; wish them well in their search for more riches. Another popular saying, Tsoy Yun Gwan Gwan, holds a similar meaning, but is jokingly avoided because the word Tsoy Yun with the same pronunciation can also mean ‘company downsizing’.
Lung Ma Jing Sun
Meaning: Having as much energy as a dragon and horse
How about a greeting that honours this year’s Zodiac animal, the dragon? Intended for both young and elderly people, Lung Ma Jing Sun wishes the recipient great energy and stamina, which those in their golden years can look forward to being greeted with to feel young again.
Chinese New Year is a special holiday for families, where old and new generations come together and find solace in being together with their loved ones. With family members of all ages under one roof, don’t be afraid to whip out a Lung Ma Jing Sun here and there for young and old alike.
Hok Yip Jun Bou
Meaning: Improvement in studies
This Chinese New Year greeting is perfect for family and friends who are in the middle of their studies – as it expresses your best wishes and beliefs for them to succeed in their academics. Hok Yip Jun Bou would be especially helpful for those who are gearing up to take an important exam, transitioning from primary to secondary, university, or any higher-education qualifications.
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