Gung Hay Fat Choy!
Chinese New Year officially began on Friday and lasts for two weeks, with 2018 marking the year of the dog.
Often celebrated with vibrant colours and loud sounds like bell ringing and firecrackers, traditional lion dances or parades are also popular in many communities.
Chinese culture puts great emphasis on zodiac animals. They move in 12-year cycles, so if you were born in 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994 or 2006 you are known as a dog. Your birth year, and the animal it represents, is said to determine your personality, according to Asian astrology.
— Zack Lim (@zack_lim) February 16, 2018
The Chinese New Year is also one of the world’s busiest travel times, as hundreds of millions of Chinese people make their way home to celebrate with family. Traditions vary, but most believe it is a time to prepare for good fortune in the coming year.
Here are some popular superstitions for Chinese New Year:
Wear brand new clothes
Wear the colour red for joy and happiness
Give red envelopes with lucky money to children and unmarried people
Greet your relatives, neighbours, and friends and wish them well
Eat lots of fish, but don’t eat up all your good fortune
Bring mandarin oranges when visiting family and friends
— Empire State Bldg (@EmpireStateBldg) February 16, 2018
Wash your hair or you will wash away any good luck for the new year
Wear white or black as they are colours of mourning
Use sharp objects like knives or scissors. They’re associated with bad luck as the sharp points are believed to cut away good luck and fortune
Say the number “four” (which sounds like the Chinese word for death)
Mention death or tell ghost stories
Take medicine on the first day of the lunar year