Chinese New Year in the Philippines

Did you know that the Chinese have been in the Philippines even before the Spaniards came in the 16th century? Chinese Filipinos make up only one to two percent of the Filipino population but those numbers don’t match their influence on the country’s history and culture.

Chinese Filipinos used to be referred to as INTSIK in Tagalog, but that word has sort of become unpopular due to negative connotations that were attached to it. The politically correct term these days is TSINOY (sometimes spelled Chinoy).

With the Lunar New Year being on Monday (January 26, 2009), I decided to make a page on how the holiday is celebrated by the Chinese community in the Philippines.

Traditions during the Chinese New Year in the Philippines

The Chinese-Filipino greeting for the New Year: Kiong Hee Huat Tsai — that’s how Tsinoys pronounce 恭喜發財 (Gong Xi Fa Cai in Mandarin; Gong Hei Fat Choi in Cantonese).

Happy New Year! 恭喜發財,紅包拿來 😉


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