Tết Gifts and Giving: Vietnamese New Year Traditions

Tết Gifts and Giving: Vietnamese New Year Traditions

Discover the traditions and importance of Tết gifts in Vietnamese New Year celebrations. Learn about the cultural significance and find inspiration for meaningful Tết gifts.

Tết, the Vietnamese New Year, is an exciting time filled with celebrations. One cherished aspect of this holiday is giving and receiving gifts. In this blog post, we will explore the importance of Tết gifts and the customs surrounding gift-giving during this festive season.

Vietnamese New Year Traditions

Tết, the Vietnamese New Year, is an incredibly special occasion that holds a really, really important place in our hearts. It brings families together from all over, whether they’re really close by or far away. During Tết, everyone, no matter how young or old, joins in the fun and excitement. We all come together to celebrate, and it’s a time filled with so much happiness and togetherness. We make precious memories that will stay with us forever. Tết is all about family and the amazing feeling of being united. It’s like a big party where relatives gather to have a fantastic time. The joy that Tết brings is indescribable. It fills our hearts with warmth, love, and so much happiness. It truly is a celebration that is absolutely joyous in every way!

Tết Gifts and Giving: Vietnamese New Year Traditions

The Significance of Tết Gifts

Tết is a time of celebration, and gift-giving plays a significant role in the festivities. But Tết gifts are not just ordinary presents. They hold deep meaning and convey heartfelt emotions such as love, respect, and gratitude. Let’s explore why Tết gifts are so important:

Prosperity and abundance: Tết gifts are a symbol of good luck and prosperity. One popular Tết gift is lucky money given in red envelopes, known as “li xi.” It is believed that these red envelopes bring blessings of wealth and financial success to the recipient. The vibrant red color wards off evil spirits and ushers in good fortune for the upcoming year.

Well-being and longevity: Tết gifts also carry wishes for good health and long life. Fruits, especially oranges and pomelos, hold a special place in Tết gift-giving. These juicy and vibrant fruits represent vitality and well-being. By presenting fruits, we express our desire for the recipient to enjoy a healthy and fulfilling life.

Tết gifts go beyond their material value. They are tokens of blessings, hopes, and wishes for a prosperous and joyful year ahead. These gifts strengthen the bonds between family members and friends, creating moments of happiness and togetherness during the Tết celebrations.

So, as you prepare for Tết, remember the significance of the gifts you give. Choose them with care and thoughtfulness, keeping in mind the wishes for prosperity, health, and the preservation of our cultural heritage. Let your Tết gifts carry the essence of love, respect, and gratitude, making the celebration even more meaningful for both the giver and the recipient.

Meaningful Tết Gifts

Choosing the perfect Tết gift requires careful thinking and an understanding of Vietnamese customs. To help you in your search, here are some ideas for meaningful Tết gifts:

Traditional Foods and Treats

Surprise your loved ones with traditional Tết delicacies that hold cultural significance. Bánh chưng and bánh tét are sticky rice cakes wrapped in banana leaves. They are excellent choices as they represent the unity of the family and the passing down of ancestral traditions. Another idea is to gift preserved fruits, such as candied ginger, coconut, or lotus seeds. These sweet treats bring a touch of delight and symbolize the wish for a prosperous year ahead. You can also consider giving roasted watermelon seeds, known as hạt dưa. These crunchy and flavorful snacks represent the hope for a fruitful harvest and the abundance that Tết brings.

Lucky Symbols and Decorations

Infuse your Tết gifts with luck, prosperity, and cultural symbolism by including traditional lucky symbols and decorations. Red envelopes, also called li xi, are a timeless Tết gift. Fill them with lucky money to bring good fortune to the recipient. Bamboo plants are another meaningful gift choice as they symbolize longevity, resilience, and growth. They are believed to bring luck and ward off negative energy. Consider including calligraphy art with positive messages. These beautifully written phrases convey blessings and good fortune for the new year. Lastly, embrace the spirit of the zodiac by gifting items related to the upcoming year’s zodiac animal. For example, if it is the Year of the Rat, you can choose small rat-themed figurines or decorations. These zodiac-related gifts add a cultural charm to your present.

By selecting thoughtful Tết gifts, you create moments of joy, appreciation, and cultural connection. Embrace the true spirit of Tết gift-giving and celebrate Vietnamese traditions with your loved ones. Let your gifts convey the love, respect, and pride you have for your culture, and cherish the special moments shared during this auspicious holiday.


Tết is a special time of the year that brings joy, togetherness, and the exchange of meaningful gifts. The act of giving Tết gifts goes beyond the physical items; it allows us to express love, respect, and gratitude for one another. We have explored the significance of Tết gifts and discussed traditional Tết gift ideas in this blog post.

As you select Tết gifts, it is crucial to keep in mind the customs and values of Vietnamese culture. By doing so, your gifts become a reflection of the rich traditions and heritage of Vietnam. Use this opportunity to strengthen your relationships with loved ones and show them how much you care.

Learn more about Vietnamese culture with VLS

For a deeper understanding of Vietnamese culture and language, look no further than Vietnamese Language Studies (VLStudies). With three decades of experience, VLStudies stands as one of Ho Chi Minh City’s leading institutions dedicated to teaching the Vietnamese language. Our expertise lies in offering courses tailored to different levels and individual needs, welcoming students from all corners of the globe.

Seize the opportunity to explore the richness of Vietnam’s language and culture with VLStudies. To learn more about our courses, faculty, and the enriching experience we provide, visit our website at Homepage – VLStudies. Chúc mừng năm mới! (Happy New Year!)


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