Happy Chinese New Year of 2024! We hope you're enjoying the biggest holiday of the year in China.
Since Chinese New Year greetings are a significant part of celebrating the Spring Festival, today we'll go over some 2024 Chinese New Year greetings, as well as common responses for when someone wishes you a Happy Chinese New Year of the Dragon.
But before, let’s explore the origins of the Chinese New Year:
WHAT IS CHINESE NEW YEAR?
Chinese New Year or Spring Festival (春节 chūn jié) is undoubtedly China’s most important holiday.
The Chinese New Year is based on the Chinese lunisolar calendar, which is different from the Gregorian calendar. According to the lunar calendar, the New Year begins on the second New Moon after the winter solstice, hence the actual date of the Chinese New Year changes every year depending on the timing of the lunar cycle.
WHEN IS THE CHINESE NEW YEAR OF 2024?
The Chinese New Year's Eve of 2024 or 除夕 chúxì is February 9, but the official public holiday starts on February 10 and ends on February 17.
This weeklong holiday is referred to as Golden Week in China, as is the seven to eight days off that people enjoy for the National Day holiday.
- Check out the dates for all the major Chinese public holidays here.
In a more traditional sense, Spring Festival celebrations can last several weeks, starting with the Laba festival 腊八 làbā jié on the 8th day of the 12th lunar month, which falls on January 18 in 2024, and ending the Lantern Festival 元宵节 yuán xiāo jié, celebrated on February 24 this year.
The Laba festival is a day of ancestral celebrations and prayers for good fortune and health in the New Year. In addition, the holiday of Little Year (小年 xiǎo nián) marks the beginning of preparations for the Spring Festival. The Little Year, which is also known as the Festival of the Kitchen God, is on February 2 this year.
2024: THE YEAR OF THE DRAGON
Chinese New Year’s Day also marks the beginning of a new lunar year, represented by one of the 12 animals of the Chinese Zodiac. As you may know, the Chinese zodiac features a 12-year cycle with each year represented by a different animal.
(You can read up on the origins of the zodiac here.)
According to the Chinese Zodiac, Chinese New Year 2024 is the year of the Dragon. People born in rabbit years (2024, 2012, 2000, 1988, 1976, 1964, 1952, 1940, 1928) are said to be ambitious, fearless and independent.
If your Chinese zodiac sign is the Dragon, you may expect the Chinese New Year of 2024 to be a good year for you. On the contrary, however, a year with the same zodiac as your birth year (in Chinese called 本命年 běnmìngnián) is believed to bring bad luck.
You can wear red clothing or jade jewelry with your zodiac sign to protect yourself from evil spirits and dispel bad fortune.
COMMON CHINESE NEW YEAR TRADITIONS
Many of the Chinese New Year customs revolve around the color red: streets and lanes are decorated with red lanterns, doors and houses are embellished with red Chinese knots (中国结 zhōngguójié) and Spring Festival couplets (春联 chūnlián), red envelopes (红包 hóngbāo) with money are given to children, and red firecrackers are set off on New Year’s Eve, for fortune and good luck.
As the Spring Festival is China’s most important holiday, families gather together to clean and decorate their homes, enjoy the New Year’s Eve feast, and send each other red packets. Lots of people travel back to their hometowns, prompting the world’s largest annual human migration (called 春运 chūnyùn, literally meaning "spring movement").
As for the Chinese New Year’s Eve dinner (年夜饭 nián yèfàn), some popular dishes include fish, spring rolls, and dumplings, as they all symbolize wealth.
COMMON CHINESE NEW YEAR GREETINGS IN CHINESE CHARACTERS
Generally, popular Chinese New Year greetings are wishes for happiness, prosperity, health and peace.
The most common way to wish a Happy Chinese New Year is 新年好 Xīnnián hǎo, literally meaning “Good New Year“ but its slightly more formal version 新年快乐 Xīnnián kuàilè (literally: "Happy New Year") is also popular.
To respond, you can simply return the same greeting: 新年快乐 Xīnnián kuàilè.
Good New Year!
Happy New Year!
Happy Spring Festival!
If you want to step it up a bit, you can greet people by using the following Chinese New Year greetings:
dà jí dà lì
Lots of luck and profits
shēn tǐ jiàn kāng
wàn shì rú yì
May all go well
nián nián yǒu yú
Surplus and abundance year after year
Step-by-step to a higher promotion
If you want to send out greetings specifically for a Happy Dragon Year, here are some greetings you can use, and you are free to add the phrase “wishing you“ (祝你 zhù nǐ) before the greeting:
Lóng nián dà jí
Happy Year of the Dragon
Lóng nián xíng dà yùn
Good luck in the Year of the Dragon
Lóng nián jíxiáng
Good luck in the Year of the Dragon
Lóng nián shìyè yǒu chéng, jiātíng xìngfú
May the Dragon Year bring you success in your career and happiness in your family!
Lóng nián hǎo yùn liánlián, xìngfú mǎn mǎn
May the Dragon Year bring you continuous luck and happiness
Lóng nián xiào kǒu cháng kāi, xìngfú měimǎn
May the Dragon Year bring you perpetual happiness and joy!
Finally, you can combine multiple wishes in one greeting to give your Chinese New Year greetings more weight and add extra luck. Believe us, if you share these Chinese New Year greetings for 2024 with your Chinese friends and family, you will be rewarded with happy, smiling faces!
祝你 2024 新年快乐, 大吉大利!
Zhù nǐ 2024 xīnnián kuàilè, dàjí dàlì!
Wishing you a happy New Year 2024, good luck and big profits!
祝您 2024 龙年大吉 龙年行大运 新年快乐!
Zhù nín 2024 lóng nián dàjí lóng nián xíng dà yùn xīnnián kuàilè!
Wishing you all the best in the Year of the Dragon 2024!
Want to learn more than just Chinese New Year greetings? Read more about Culture Yard's online Chinese courses here.