Meaning of New Year’s Eve in Vietnam

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Tet, the Lunar New Year festival, is the most important holiday in Vietnam.  As people believe Tet refreshes everything in their lives, they treasure the moment of seeing off the old year and welcoming the new year. In Vietnam, New year’s eve (Giao thua) occurs at exactly midnight of the last day in Lunar calendar.


Normally, before gathering to celebrate New Year’s eve with family, every family must prepare offerings and carry out 2 spiritual ceremonies: one inside the house, and the other outside the house. This custom is practiced to sweep away all of the bad things in the old year, and welcome a new year with luck and brightness. It has also been said that these ceremonies will scare away the ghosts of old year.   

After finishing the ceremonies, it is time for family members stay together and waiting for the turning moment of the year. The children will tell their grandparents and parents of their work during the year, and the elderly never forget to remind their children of what should be done in the coming year. Unwanted things will be set aside to welcome a new year of hope.        

New Year’s Eve (Giao Thua) is considered a sacred moment. According to Vietnamese’s belief, Giao Thua is when all of the old things are given back to the past, and new things come with joy and happiness. That is the reason why Vietnamese people are willing to forget all past problems and quarrels to start a new year after celebrating this moment.


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