How to say "Happy New Year" and wish someone in Vietnamese

Saying Happy New Year in Vietnamese

Vietnamese New Year is called "Tết Nguyên Đán" or simply "Tết". It is the most important and popular festival in Vietnam where everyone comes home to celebrate new year with their families.

If you're living in Vietnamese or have Vietnamese family members, the best way to anticipate for Tết is to learn how to greet and wish others Happy New year in Vietnamese.

So in this lesson, you'll learn:

"Happy New Year" in Vietnamese

1. Chúc mừng năm mới

  • It is the standard way of saying "Happy New Year" in Vietnamese, especially during your visit to others' homes, or right after the countdown. You can say it to your relatives, boss, co-workers, and friends.
  • The word chúc means "to wish", and mừng means "glad" or "joyful". Chúc mừng together has the meaning of "to congratulate" in Vietnamese.
  • The word năm means "year", and mới means "new". So Năm mới literally means "new year".

2. "Năm mới vui vẻ"

  • This is a more casual and personal way to say "Happy New Year" to friends and close family members.
  • The words năm mới as we know means "new year", and vui vẻ means "happy". So the whole phrase literally means "Happy New Year".
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"Happy New Year" Wishes in Vietnamese

To wish someone for New Year, you can follow the pattern below

"Năm mới, chúc + [term of address] + [wishes]"
= New year, wish you ___

The terms of address, or "pronouns" are words that you use to address someone in Vietnamese.

You can learn about it in my free course Learn Vietnamese Basics in 1 Hour for Absolute Beginner. Here's a summary:

bạn (friend)
to call a same-age friend or a stranger around your generation (casual)

anh (older brother)
to call an older male in your generation

chị (older sister)
to call an older female in your generation

em (younger sibling)
to call a younger male or female in your generation

chú (uncle)
to call a man in your parent's generation

to call a woman in your parent's generation

ông (grandpa)
to call a man in your grandparent's generation

to call a woman in your grandparent's generation

con (child/niece/nephew/grandchild)
to call a younger male or female in your child/grandchild's generation

So what can you wish someone with? Here are some suggestions:

sức khoẻ

bình an
peace (= nothing bad would come)

tài lộc

công việc thuận lợi
work/job goes smoothly

công việc thăng tiến
work/job advances

có nhiều niềm vui
have lots of happiness

Following the given patterns, we'll have complete phrases like this to wish someone.

Năm mới, chúc ông sức khoẻ
New year, wish you (grandpa) health

Năm mới, chúc anh công việc thuận lợi
New year, wish you your work goes smoothly

Năm mới, chúc mẹ sức khoẻ và có nhiều niềm vui
New year, wish you (mom) health and have lots of happiness.

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Common Vietnamese New Year Wishes

On the first day of Tết, family members, relatives and close family friends would wish each other luck and prosperity. Here are some common wishes that you can use.

Vạn sự như ý
Everything goes according to your wishes

Dồi dào sức khoẻ
Plenty of health

Tiền vô như nước
Money goes in like water

Tiền ra nhỏ giọt
Money goes out like water drops

Sống lâu trăm tuổi
Live long till 100 years (for elders)

Hay ăn chóng lớn
Eat well, grow rapidly (for children)

Must-know words for Vietnamese New Year

Below is the list of common words that you would hear or see during Tết.

giao thừa
means "New Year’s Eve".

pháo hoa / pháo bông
means "fireworks".

lì xì
refers to the lucky money given to the children my the adults during Tết, often in a red envelop.

chúc tết
refers to the action of giving New Year wishes.

nâng ly
literally "raise the glasses".

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