Jump to content

Chinese New Year Dinner Part Etiquette

  • Please log in to reply
14 replies to this topic

#1 Fat Amy

Posted 08 February 2013 - 11:12 PM

We've been invited to a dinner party to celebrate the Chinese New year tomorrow night by some Taiwanese that work for DH.    

I never been to anything like this before but I'd assume that they would have some traditions. So is there something that I should or should not take? What should we expect? What should we wear? Are there any no no's?

Or am I just over thinking this?

#2 Expelliarmus

Posted 08 February 2013 - 11:40 PM

Take oranges!

No seriously they bring good luck and you take oranges (or tangerines) when visiting at New Year.

And wear red, it's the colour of good luck original.gif

#3 Procrastinator5000

Posted 08 February 2013 - 11:44 PM

They won't have any expectations on you to follow traditions, as you're Westerners. They just want to share theirs with you. I really wouldn't try too hard, just be really interested and polite about everything and show that you're enjoying it!

Having said that, take a big box of Ferrero Rochers  wink.gif  Everyone brings boxes of chocolate or biscuits to exchange at this time of year.

#4 CallMeFeral

Posted 08 February 2013 - 11:47 PM

Maybe don't wear all white or black - think they are funeral colors or something?

#5 Expelliarmus

Posted 08 February 2013 - 11:57 PM

Yeah, they are.

#6 FEdeRAL

Posted 09 February 2013 - 12:14 AM

QUOTE (howdo @ 09/02/2013, 12:40 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Take oranges!

No seriously they bring good luck and you take oranges (or tangerines) when visiting at New Year.

And wear red, it's the colour of good luck original.gif

Bring even number of mandarins/tangerines/oranges. 2 is ideal really, because 4 in Chinese sounds like death. Usually your host will give you a couple of mandarins as you leave.

#7 Leafprincess

Posted 09 February 2013 - 05:34 AM

QUOTE (Procrastinator5000 @ 08/02/2013, 11:44 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Having said that, take a big box of Ferrero Rochers  wink.gif  Everyone brings boxes of chocolate or biscuits to exchange at this time of year.


#8 FizzlingFireboxes

Posted 09 February 2013 - 07:25 AM

QUOTE (CallMeProtart @ 09/02/2013, 12:47 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Maybe don't wear all white or black - think they are funeral colors or something?

Oh crap, we have been invited out to have dinner with one of DH's clients tonight to celebrate with them. I only have a black and white dress that fits me that would be appropriate for a Chinese restaurant (33weeks preg) oh crap, better go shopping. original.gif

#9 Fat Amy

Posted 09 February 2013 - 10:11 AM

Thanks for your replies. Do you think a pink dress will be ok?

#10 IShallWearMidnight

Posted 09 February 2013 - 10:48 AM

its just our immediate family this cny sad.gif

#11 FEdeRAL

Posted 09 February 2013 - 11:28 AM

QUOTE (Milmo @ 09/02/2013, 11:11 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Thanks for your replies. Do you think a pink dress will be ok?

Yes original.gif

#12 tibs

Posted 09 February 2013 - 11:28 AM

My chinese relatives tend to give things like the gold ferrero rochers or the red lindt balls when they go visiting or for a meal with someone, gold and red are the lucky colours.

#13 Fat Amy

Posted 09 February 2013 - 01:56 PM

Also, I just realized its a new years party. Would it be too rude if we left before midnight? Just thinking of kids and babysitters.

#14 *LucyE*

Posted 09 February 2013 - 02:05 PM

Is it at a restaurant or private residence?

Either way, leaving before midnight is fine.  It isn't like the 12am 1 January type new years celebrations.

If you want to take a gift, the suggestions of gold or red wrapped chocolates are good.

Black is a perfectly fine colour to wear.  Avoid white.  Red is ideal.  Use red accessories to go with the black dress if you like.

If the hosts have children under the age of 18, you can join in the token red packet gifting.  Put some cash (ideally crisp current year notes) in a red envelope (do not on any account use a normal white one).  Usually the denominations have to be even or something like that.

If you are going to a restaurant, put a small note (a $5 or $10) in a red envelope to 'feed' the dancing lions that usually come around.  It is acceptable to 'tease' the lion/dragon and make them work for the envelope.

ETA  most of the dishes served at a chinese new year banquet have a meaning behind it.  It is polite to try (or at least take some to put in your bowl/plate) all of the dishes.  It's about spreading good luck to all.

Edited by *LucyE*, 09 February 2013 - 02:07 PM.

#15 Lagom

Posted 09 February 2013 - 02:06 PM

We go every year to BIL's IL's and we bring either mandarins/oranges, tinned biscuits/sweets or Ferrero Rochers.
Milmo, we never stay until midnight.  It's usually a lunch/afternoon thing that we go to.

Have fun!

eta You can get the little decorated envelopes especially for NY from your local Asian Grocer (if you have one).

Edited by amabanana, 09 February 2013 - 02:08 PM.

0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users


The device that allows you to bottle feed and use your phone at the same time

"It dawned on me that I could do some catch-up work while he fed, but I needed something to help me hold a bottle and my smartphone."

Mum posts photo of c-section scar to prove she gave birth

A new mum angered by people suggesting women who deliver their babies via caesarean section have not "given birth" has challenged that misconception by sharing a photograph of her scar.

Olivia Wilde and Jason Sudeikis welcome daughter

Actress Olivia Wilde and her fiance Jason Sudeikis are parents again.

Nurse cuts off part of newborn's finger

A newborn baby is without the tip of one finger after a nurse accidentally cut it off with scissors.

See the new Thomas & Friends clothing range for girls

It's a long overdue move for kids and parents alike.

Finally, someone's come up with a way to stop doona thieves

If you've ever shared a bed with a dyed-in-the-wool doona stealer you'll know how frustrating it can be.

Family rituals to make mealtimes easier: mums share their tips

Special rituals, as well as favourite cutlery and plates, can make dinner times less challenging and a lot more fun!

Toddler pours entire bag of dog biscuits down the toilet

Most mums of toddlers have a funny horror story about the time they turned their back for 30 seconds only to find mayhem on their return.

Surgeons successfully separate 13-month-old twins conjoined at head

Surgeons at a New York City hospital have separated a pair of 13-month-old boys who were congenitally joined at the head, completing a rare operation that carried a risk of death and severe brain damage, their mother said.

'Do I call the parents or an exorcist?'

Babies can sometimes get themselves into unusual positions while sleeping, but this youngster has the makings of an acrobat.

The complicated grief of losing your babies

In the park near our house my partner and I have a bench. We paid to have it put there last year after our twin boys Fred and John died.

How the way you’re born and fed can affect your immune system

Vaginal or caesarean, bottle- or breastfed: it all influences our gut microbes and future health.

Depression made me a crummy friend - but I'm working on it

Getting well and falling in love with my son has brought a feeling words simply can't describe. But I didn't expect it to be a little heartbreaking, too.

Mountain Buggy Bagrider makes travel so much easier with baby

Haven't we all needed more hands when travelling with babies and toddlers?

'I look like a troll!': mum shares postpartum hair regrowth woes

Rather than hiding her postpartum hair regrowth, author Giovana Fletcher has photographed and shared it.

A police officer saved a baby's life, forever changing his own

With his bald head, light goatee and bulging arms covered in dark tattoos, Officer Kenneth Knox is an imposing figure.

The tandem breastfeeding photo that got a mum's Facebook account shut down

A mother of six from the US claims that Facebook disabled her account because she posted a photograph of herself tandem breastfeeding a stranger's baby along with her own.


Top 5 Articles


What's hot on EB

Win a Hawaii beachfront resort holiday for two!

Enter now for your chance to win 1 of 4 trips for two to Hawaii, staying at Outrigger resorts in Waikiki.


Vintage Toys

The toys of your childhood

Take a trip down memory lane with these vinage and retro toys that you may have had in your childhood or your parent's childhood.

Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.