hong bao

Hong Bao Giving in Chinese Tradition and Auspicious Way

Chinese New Year is just around the corner and are you excited to receive or give Hong Bao? But do you know that there are some Do’s and Don’ts in giving Hong Bao? If not, you might like to read on.

Hong Bao Giving Do’s and Don’ts in Chinese Traditions

1. Hong Bao should contain even number of dollars to symbolise auspicious meaning

It is considered auspicious to give even numbered amounts of cash inside a red packet on joyous occasion like Chinese New Year, wedding or birthday. It would even be better if it can end with a 8 such as 118, 188 or 168.

As for odd number, it is believed to signify death and therefore it is given in funeral “white gold”.

2. Use Brand New dollars to pack in Hong Bao

Using new bank notes in the new year represent a fresh new start and symbolize that you are ready to welcome the good things in the coming year.

3. Do not use expired Red packet 

Do not use hong Bao with outdated design, especially those with the Chinese Zodiac. It indicate that you have no heart to give the blessing.

4. Use only Red color packet

In Chinese tradition, red color means good luck and fortune so in the event of CNY, the Chinese choose to put the money in red envelopes. They want to give their children both lucky money and lucky color, so do not use those Hong bao in funny design and color as it will defy the purpose.

5. Do not open the red packet in front of the elder

It is considered as disrespect if you open the Ang Pow in the face of the elder or anyone who give you the red packet.

Keep this as a reference when you are preparing your hong bao.





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Traditions & CultureHong Bao Giving in Chinese Tradition and Auspicious Way