8 Money Tips For Chinese New Year

CompareHero.my Team

CompareHero.my Team

Last updated 08 February, 2021

You can tell that Chinese New Year is just around the corner when the shopping malls have put up their decorations and your colleagues are eagerly talking about going back to their hometowns. But did you know there are many ways to save money this Chinese New Year? Let's take this opportunity to start the year on the right foot by taking charge of your finances.

1. Go easy on the decorations

CNY is all about the decorations! But you don't really have to go overboard with extra lights and lanterns. If you still have last year's decorations you keep in the store, take them all out and reuse them again this year. You don't necessarily have to buy new ones. 

You can also check out some YouTube tutorial videos or some cool DIY hacks on Pinterest where you can self-create the decorations.

2. Rewear you old CNY clothes with a new style

Buying new clothes for Chinese New Year can be wasteful. People are encouraged and told to buy new clothes because it's considered back luck to keep the old. You can still come out with a new outfit without having to buy new clothes, but how does this work?

Reorganise your existing wardrobe and rearrange the previous CNY collection that you have, or clothes that you rarely or have never worn before. There's a chance that you'll find something that will complete the CNY vibe.

If you're still adamant in getting new clothes, you can take advantage of the CNY sale. Some online stores offer good deals and prices, so you can check it out and see if there's any good outfit you can wear for the festive season.

3. Look out for dining deals

Many of the local restaurants will be taking advantage of the break and won’t be open for business. So instead of bringing your family to a fast food joint, try checking out sites like Fave for special dining deals. It won’t necessarily be Chinese cuisine, but that doesn’t mean you should binge on junk food or eat unhealthy meals. You really don’t want to be putting on the ‘fat’ in ‘fatt’ over Chinese New Year.

4. Go easy on the snacks

Every year, you’ll see stores and stalls selling festive snacks and mandarin oranges everywhere you go. However with prices going up and a number of snacks you get going down, you may want to reconsider how much you spend. So set a fixed budget for your snacks, as your guests are there for the company, not the cuisine!

We’re not saying that you should completely go without these snacks, but why not consider stocking up on non-festive snacks as well? They’re just as tasty and more affordable. Don’t forget to bring a few mandarin oranges with you when visiting your friend’s homes as well!

5. Shop online (if you must)

New doesn’t necessarily mean better, especially if you’re going to be changing your entire wardrobe! So try to refrain from buying new clothes for Chinese New Year if you have outfits that are less than a year old. But if you still insist on getting a new outfit, check out sites like Shopee, Lazada and Zalora for their Chinese New Year sales items. Don’t forget to check which days your bank’s credit card may get a special discount as well!

Related: Shopee & Lazada CNY Sale: 27 Last-Minute Gift Ideas For Your Family And Friends

6. Teach your family new money tricks

It's important for kids to learn about money early in life. During Lunar New Year celebrations, your children may receive money from friends or relatives, so why not take this opportunity to teach them about managing money. Sit down with them and explain the basics, such as the importance of having a budget, saving money and paying off any debts.

7. Manage your ‘ang pows’

This goes especially for our fellow Malaysians who are married and have to give red packets (ang pow) to their friends and family. Pay off all financial commitments and set aside your monthly savings first, even before you start counting how much you need for ang pow money. This will help keep your finances in check, so be realistic!

Ang pows are meant to be a symbolic gift for luck, so there’s no need to be competitive about who’s giving out more money for Chinese New Year. If necessary, you can have a rates card (we’re not kidding, people actually do this) to see who should get more or less, but stay within your budget.

If you plan on giving an ang pow to your friend’s children, ask the parents if they are comfortable with how much you’re giving their child. Don’t be that aunt or uncle that gives a child more money than they know what to do with and end up causing a scene when the parents have to take away the money. Instead, give the ang pow money directly to the parents and explain that it’s a gift for their child to start a savings plan.

8. Don’t push your luck when it comes to gambling

This one’s a bit tricky but rest assured we won’t be getting preachy about the legalities of gambling in Malaysia. However, we advise that you don’t get too carried away while playing cards with your friends and family over Chinese New Year. Keep the stakes low and friendly so you don’t end up losing all of your ang pow money (or friends and family).

On the other hand, some of you may be tempted to head up to Genting Highlands to test your Chinese New Year luck. As adults, you can make your own choices and we hope that you make the right decision for yourself. Please note that gambling addiction is a very serious problem, so please seek help if necessary. One snippet of wisdom we’d also like to share with you is this:

“If it was that easy to make money off gambling, all the casinos would be out of business. And that’s why the house always wins.”

That’s it for our list of tips to help you save money this Chinese New Year! If you want more of CompareHero.my’s financial tips and advice, be sure to check out the rest of our blog or sign up for our Newsletter here.

See also: ‘Lucky’ Places to Visit for Chinese New Year

CompareHero.my strives to empower Malaysians with financial literacy and the tools to make better financial decisions in life. Find and compare the best credit cards, personal loans. travel insurance, and car insurance on CompareHero.my today.

Gong Xi Fa Cai from all of us at CompareHero.my!

The CompareHero.my team is comprised of many talented individuals, sharing their knowledge, experiences and research to help others make better financial decisions.