What do you think about How to Enjoy Chinese New Year as an Expat in Singapore?

For many native Singaporean residents, the rapidly approaching Lunar New Year represents the single most important date of the year.

Also known as Chinese New Year, the spring festival holiday is associated with traditions thousands of years old and is celebrated by communities the world over. Singapore marks the auspicious date with a public extravaganza of light and dance, getting fully into the festival spirit with food, fashion, and public events.

If you’re an expat currently living in Singapore, the advent of such a raucous and colourful holiday might be the perfect cultural experience, but it also could be a bewildering drain on your energy if you aren’t prepared. With that in mind, here’s a short guide to the key facets of Chinese New Year in Singapore.

Paint the town red

One of the most visible cultural foundations of the Spring Festival is the veneration of the colour red, which is simply everywhere in Singapore at this time. Seen to signify luck and prosperity, you will see people buying new clothes, cooking food, and daubing their homes in the colour. 

If you plan on celebrating or at least blending in during the festival, it’s a good idea to plan your best “red” look. Buying new clothes – especially ones which are red themselves – is considered good luck at this time of year, so don’t be afraid to splash out a bit in order to look the part.

It’s all about family

Togetherness and family unity are a huge cultural theme of the holiday. One of the central moments of the holiday season is Reunion Dinner, when scattered family members move hell and high water to get home for dinner on the eve of the Lunar New Year. If you’re a lonesome single expat far from home on a night like this, it can be very easy to feel cut off from the celebration and sink into a melancholy homesickness.

Take the opportunity to match like with like; Allied Pickfords recommends looking into local expat bars and social media groups to see if anyone else is partying against the grain on reunion night.

It’s not just about the New Year

In Singapore, the Lunar New Year is traditionally marked by a 2-day public holiday, sometimes 3-day, and the revellers will make those days count. But if the holiday itself is too intense or just not your style, the festive season persists for a good month around this crimson crescendo. Featuring a range of mouth-watering seasonal food prepared only around the New Year, colourful public decorations and a cheerful, relaxed atmosphere, this could be the perfect antidote to frantic New Year’s Eve celebrations.

Make sure to witness the legendary Chingay Parade, held 8 days after the Lunar New Year, 2019 Chingay Parade Singapore will begin at 7:00 PM on Friday, February 15, F1 Pit Building (Next to Singapore Flyer). One of Singapore’s most cherished public traditions. Every year, the Chingay Organising Committee requires the support of over 2,000 volunteers from various educational institutions in various aspects of the parade as our hospitality ambassadors, production crew, motivators, crowd control, traffic management, F&B and logistics volunteers etc. volunteer support is crucial to the smooth operations of Chingay and the major rehearsals prior to the parade.

Brought To You By ExpatChoice.Asia

Comments

Rated
7.5
Richard
ELITE
609 comments
13 February 2017
Awesome tips by all. thank you for sharing. We had a lovely time participating in the CNY both personally and professionally. Thanks for adding this article to not only understand, but to enjoy the culture here during this very festive time.

Replies

Add Reply
Rated
7.5
John
NEWBIE
5 comments
24 January 2017
I've had 8 Chinese new year celebrations in Singapore and have enjoyed every single one. The level of the celebration can be so diverse depending on whether you are associated with a Singaporean family or partner, who will always involve you in the celebrations, or otherwise you might be an expat family not quite sure how to manage the holiday weekend and subsequent 15 days of CNY, having just got over your own Christmas celebrations. My advice is to get out and enjoy the color and movement around Chinatown and likewise out in all the heartland neighborhoods across the island. Wear red out of respect if you want but you don't have to go over board. Always acknowledge your fellow Asians as it is there New year and considered auspicious. I'd love to hear some more comments here about "your" CNY and how you intend to celebrate it...

Replies

Add Reply
Rated
7.5
Mel
NEWBIE
1 comment
24 January 2017
Some great tips!

Replies

Yes indeed Mel. Some great advice and observations from you and Allied Pickfords to consider. And I totally agree - it is all about Family
Add Reply

 
x
x