How much ang pow money should you give?

Here are helpful tips if you are preparing those red packets for the Lunar New Year visits!

Parents-How-much-ang-pow-money-should-you-give-MAIN
It’s that time of year! Now that the spring-cleaning is out of the way and you’ve bought every Chinese New Year goodie you can lay your hands on, you can’t wait for the reunion dinner and to see junior all decked out in their gorgeous new garb.

Of course, as married adults, you’ll also have to prepare a stash of ang pows ― those auspicious red packets that hold various amounts of cash to present to kids.

The red colour of the ang pows symbolises good luck and happiness in the coming year, as well as blessings on the receiver.

As for the amount of money to put inside the ang pow… Well, as much as we’d like to say that it’s the thought that counts, the reality is that giving an inappropriate amount can hurt and offend both parties.

Even fairly large amounts that contain an odd digit, like the 3 in $30, are considered inauspicious, and reserved for events like funerals.

To simplify things for you, check out these general rules:

* Don’t give odd numbers Odd amounts like $5 or $7 are generally considered inauspicious, while even numbers show that you’re in good “shape” for the new year. Even fairly large amounts that contain an odd digit, like the 3 in $30, are considered inauspicious, and reserved for events like funerals. You’re better off going with a number like $28. 

* Stay away from the number 4 The number, in Chinese, sounds like the word “die”, which is bad luck. Since many Chinese avoid this number ― for instance, in terms of their unit number of their house, or their car licence plate number ― so, it’s no surprise that 4 is not a “good” amount to put in an ang pow.  

* Use new notes, if possible Crisp new notes symbolise a new beginning and a new year

* Don’t use out-of-date ang pows You know, those packets depicting a different zodiac animal from the New Year you’re celebrating. For instance, if it’s the Year of the Dog, don’t give a red packet with the image of a rabbit, just because you think it’s cute! Also, there are some red packets with the Chinese word xi (囍) or the Chiniese characters for double happiness on them ― these red packets are reserved for weddings.