How To Celebrate Chinese New Year If You're In Another Country

By @nessdoctor on
chinese new year
People pray with joss sticks at a Chinese temple, ahead of the Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations in Nonthaburi province, on the outskirts of Bangkok Reuters/ Chaiwat Subprasom

Celebrating Chinese New Year in another country should not compel you to stop tradition and customs. You can still have a great time in the company of a few family member and friends or even by yourself. Here are some great ways to celebrate Chinese New Year in a place that does not.

Cleaning out

TravelChinaGuide reported that many Chinese clean their house thoroughly as a way to drive out bad luck and get rid of old things. It is a symbol starting fresh and new. You can continue the practice if you are in another country by cleaning your apartment or hotel room just before New Year. Afterward, buy new clothes and dress up as you wait for the New Year. Most Chinese like to wear polka-dotted or checkered patterns on their clothes which symbolize cash and good luck.


You can decorate your place in preparation for Chinese New Year. Red and gold are the most popular tones and considered lucky by the Chinese so you can use these when changing curtains, couch covers, blankets, carpets and mats. Put red flowers in a vase and put out your red plates, mugs and other home accessories for your own little celebration. You can also make and hang papercuts on windows, ceilings, walls and doors. Paper cutting is actually an ancient Chinese form of art.

New Year food

AboutFood said that sticky cake or Nian Gao is a popular Chinese New Year treat that Chinese families share together and offer to the kitchen god when the clock strikes twelve. The sticky characteristic of the food is said to draw good luck and fortune. You can purchase sticky rice from a local Chinese store or make your own if you know a family recipe.

Tune in

Staying up until the clock strikes twelve has been an ancient tradition among Chinese families. You can do the same by knowing the time difference from your current place and China then waiting until the local time reaches midnight. You will most likely find a TV channel that features local Chinese families preparing and waiting for the big celebration. Watch the fireworks display and musical performances on TV so you can join the celebration despite being miles away.

Celebrating Chinese New Year in another country can be fun and memorable if you remember the ancient practices. No matter where you are in the world, you can always celebrate. 

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