What are some common Chinese New Year Greetings? How do you wish someone a Happy New Year in Chinese? Here are some
of the most common phrases and sayings during this most important of holidays.
The most common way to wish someone a Happy New Year is by saying
Gōng Xǐ Fā Cái in Mandarin
Gong Hey Fat Choy in Cantonese
The written characters are the same for all dialects:
Gōng Xǐ - are good wishes or congratulations
Fā Cái - to become rich, acquire wealth
So together it means "best and prosperous wishes" for the coming year.
The more literal way of wishing someone a Happy New Year is
Xīn- is New
Nián - means Year
Kuài Lè - means Happy, Joyful
So Xīn Nián Kuài Lè translates literally into "Happy New Year"
Now, children, pay attention, when someone says Gōng Xǐ Fā Cái to you, you answer:
Hóng- is Red
Bāo - means packet or envelope
Ná Lái - means to take on
So can you guess what you just asked for? Hóng Bāo Ná Lái means something like "May I have my Red Envelope please?", so it's
quite common for children to greet their uncles and aunties when they arrive with:
Gōng Xǐ Fā Cái, Hóng Bāo Ná Lái!!!
Chinese New Year Greetings for Banners, Cards and Scrolls
We also see Chinese New Year Greetings in the banners and scrolls that hang from just about everywhere, mostly on the side of entrances which offer
a warm welcome to the guests and visitors as well as wishes of good fortune.
The most popular and prominent symbol you will see come Chinese New Year time is "FU", pictured here, which means Prosperity and Wealth.
Here are some of the most popular greetings and quotes you often see printed, you can use them to make your own
banners to decorate your house, greeting cards to send to friends and loved ones, red envelopes, etc.
Follow the links to learn how to write the characters stroke by stroke.
Remember the phrases made up of two or more characters can also be written vertically from top to bottom, specially when placing them alongside doors:
Chinese New Year Greeting Cards
Try making your own with some of the above Good Luck messages and greetings. Or choose from this year's
selection of Spring Festival greeting cards at Amazon:
More Chinese New Year Traditions and Celebrations