We haven't recovered from the festivities of Christmas and New Year... and it seems that Chinese New Year is already upon us!
If you're feeling frazzled over the last minute preparations, don't be.
We've prepared the 10 Last Minute Things You Absolutely Cannot Forget to save you any embarassments during Chinese New Year.
Read on to find out what they are!
Yes, this is secretly everyone's favourite part of celebrating CNY. But we're not talking about collecting them from your friends and family...
As many of our readers are working and married, it might actually be your turn to start giving out ang baos this year! Instead of buying red packets, you can actually collect them from shops, malls, banks and companies that you subscribe to.
It takes stress off if you start getting ready early, plus, it's definitely a plus that you get to save some money on the actual red packets!
There are many new ways to give ang baos now, such as through QR codes and apps. DBS is giving away FREE QR Gift Ang Baos which allow you to top up the amount digitally with the receiver who redeems it via PayNOW. Givers or receivers of the DBS QR Gift cards can also win up to S$888* by playing the ‘TapLah!’ game, exclusively on DBS PayLah! Read more about it here.
If you want to wish your relative some luck, why not buy some 4D/toto tickets and add them into the and bao?
P.S. Don't forget to withdraw crisp new notes for the red packets! The list of DBS ATM Pop Up ATMs can be found here.
Another highlight of Chinese New Year has to be the goodies. We know, we know, it's a special time and you should be able to treat yourself without feeling guilty.
But we can't help but second guess our every bite after seeing lots of CNY calorie infographics. Thank you to the creator, BTW, it's not like everyone wants to know that three pineapple tarts are equivalent to a bowl of rice.
Anyway, you can eat healthier while having fun if you try new recipes and have a go at baking at home. This way, you'll be able to have a heartwarming activity-filled day and you'll end up with wonderful goodies that you actually know the ingredients of.
Whether you purchase new items during the CNY period because you want to bring in new feng shui or you use it as an excuse to buy whatever you want, we're not judging you.
However, with the rapidly changing climate, it's wise to think twice before you buy that new dress. While sustainable eco-friendly brands might not be in everyone's price range, buying less from a regular brand is still better than over-consuming from any brand.
There's also the option of renting clothes, shopping second-hand or doing a clothes swap with friends! If you do decide to buy something brand new, think wisely and see if you can wear it easily with other items in your closet. You don't want to buy something that's just for these 2 days.
One key food item during CNY, no matter whether you eat at home or outside, is yu sheng! You have to 'lou hei' together every year for good luck, right? There are so many varieties of yu sheng, ranging from the simple ones with the base ingredients to fancy ones with dried ice and special ingredients.
If you're getting some friends over to your house or even your parents' place, you would probably want to spend some time to clean your house and organize your room... don't leave embarassing photos or items lying around.
Cleaning aside, consider getting some fresh flowers to brighten the whole house up and put on some chun lian for the CNY vibe!
You can't forget about gifting gam (oranges) when it's this time of the year. Stock up on some from your supermarket, wet market or even IKEA (yes, they sell oranges and they're are actually super sweet and tasty!).
When you're giving them away, use your saved paper bags or eco-friendly bags so you'll do your friend and the environment a favour.
With new phone models coming out every year, it can be tough on your bank account to constantly change your phone. There's no real need to get a new one if your current phone is still working fine.
If you're bored of how your phone looks why not get a new phone case instead?
There are so many options nowadays from simple pasar malam ones to cute cases you can buy online.
You can even get one just for CNY!
Of course, we can't forget about hair. It's the perfect time to freshen up your hair because the cut, colour, perm or rebonding will look perfect next week for CNY.
Keen to check out more salon promotions? Read on for the list of salons that have no CNY surcharge!
It's not just your house, clothes and hair that have to look CNY ready, but your face and hands too since you'll be meeting many people and shaking lots of hands.
We also think it's a wonderful excuse for a fancy pedicure because you can get a CNY-inspired design! Be sure to call the nail and lash salons soon because slots fill up fast during the festive period.
Yup, with CNY comes family gatherings and with that, the constant questions, nagging and concern from your relatives. If you find yourself always getting irritated or caught off guard every year, it's time to make a change.
We all know the type of questions that will be asked, so why not prepare in advance? You'll be able to deflect and excuse yourself. Need ideas? Check this article on 13 epic responses to awkward Chinese New Year questions!