Whether you celebrate Chinese New Year or just enjoy the festive treats, you may have heard many people sharing New Year greetings during this yearly holiday.
Instead of falling back on the ever-common “huat ah!”, why not learn a couple of phrases that you can use to greet people during this auspicious time of the year?
Chinese New Year is also known as 春节 (chūn jié), or Spring Festival. It marks the dawn of spring, which symbolises new beginnings and fresh starts. Here are some general festive greetings that can be used for anyone from seniors to your neighbours.
- 新年快乐 (xīn nián kuài lè) — to wish one Happy New Year.
- 万事如意 (wàn shì rú yì) — wishing for things to go according to one’s wishes.
- 阖家幸福 (hé jiā xìng fú) — wishing happiness for one’s whole family.
Wealth And Prosperity
Money and wealth are highly valued in Chinese culture, and the Chinese are not shy to talk about money. It’s considered appropriate and polite to offer wealth-related greetings at New Year.
Here are two wealth and prosperity greetings that you can use:
- 恭喜发财 (gōng xǐ fā cái) — to wish one wealth and prosperity.
- 金玉滿堂 (jīn yù mǎn táng) — to wish that one’s home is full of jade and gold.
Food And Symbolisms
Some food items became a traditional symbol of Chinese New Year because of the way their names sound. For example, mandarin oranges 桔 (jú) are pronounced the same way in Cantonese as the word 吉 (jí), “auspiciousness”.
The Mandarin word 余 (yú) means “abundance”, and sounds like the word 鱼 (yú), or “fish”. This is why families often prepare fish dishes for Chinese New Year's Eve dinner and another for the next day, as they believe that it means having a “surplus for the new year”!
Here are two Chinese New Year greetings involving food wordplay that you can use:
- 大吉大利 (dà jí dà lì) — to wish that one gains a lot of luck and profits.
- 年年有余 (nián nián yǒu yú) — to wish that one’s has abundance year after year.
Zodiac Year Greetings
As 2022 will be a year of the Tiger, you may get some laughs greeting people with phrases that include the word 虎 (hǔ) which means tiger. Here are some to consider:
- 虎年大吉 (hǔ nián dà jí) — wish one luck in the year of the Tiger.
- 虎虎生威 (hǔ hǔ shēng wēi) — wishing one to have the fullness, vigour, and vitality of the tiger
- 龙腾虎跃 (lóng téng hǔ yuè) — to wish one a prosperous and thriving New Year.
We hope these CNY greetings will come in handy this festive season!
Some Festive Stickers You Can Share
Now that you’ve learned some Chinese New Year greetings to share, why not pair your auspicious greetings with AIC’s Chinese New Year stickers? Simply follow these steps: