Tuesday, February 1, marks the beginning of the Lunar New Year, a 15-day festival that’s celebrated across Asian communities, regions, and cultures around the world, including South Korea, Thailand, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia and many more. It begins with the first new moon of the lunar calendar and ends on the first full moon. It represents a time of celebration and festivities, spending time with family, and ensuring good fortune for the upcoming year.

Lunar New Year is also closely linked to the Chinese Zodiac. In Chinese tradition, each year is assigned one of 12 animals featured in the Chinese zodiac: Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, and Pig. 2022 is the Year of the Tiger, an animal that’s generally associated with being energetic, courageous, and a strong leader.

Lunar New Year is celebrated differently across many different cultures in Asia. Below are a few examples of some Lunar New Year activities and customs:

Putting up decorations

Streets, buildings, and houses are decorated with red. Red is the main colour for the festival, as red is believed to symbolise luck, prosperity and good fortune.

Eating reunion dinner with family on Lunar New Year's Eve

Lunar New Year is a time for families to be together. The Lunar New Year's Eve (31 January) dinner is called 'reunion dinner', and is believed to be the most important meal of the year. It may be difficult for some people to see their families over this time due to COVID-19 and feelings of loneliness may arise. If you’re unable to see your family, organise a time to video chat or spend some time with close friends who you’re able to see in person. If you’re feeling down for a longer period of time, reach out to your GP or Sonder who can help provide support.

Firecrackers and fireworks

It's long been a Chinese tradition to set off firecrackers from the first minute of their New Year. From public displays in major cities to millions of private celebrations in China's rural areas, the sky lights up!

Giving red envelopes and other gifts

Much like Christmas in other countries, people exchange gifts during Lunar New Year. The most common Lunar New Year gifts are red envelopes (for good luck) that contain money.

Stay safe this Lunar New Year

If you’re heading out to a Lunar New Years festival, make sure you stay safe. Whether that’s by nominating a designated driver, drinking responsibly or by ordering an Uber, ensure you get home safe and well.

Use Sonder to stay safe while you’re walking home with the Track My Journey feature, or if you’re in a situation where you feel unsafe, you can use Check On Me. This way you’ll have that reassurance and still be able to enjoy your night!


If you have any questions or need extra support, we're here to help you anytime in any language. Simply start a chat with us via the home screen of the Sonder app.

Image credit: Tran Huy on Unsplash

All content is created and published for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice. Always seek the guidance of a qualified health professional.

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