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Hong Bau

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flyingfoxx
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Hong Bau

Postby flyingfoxx » Mon, 11 Feb 2008 11:34 am

What would be a politically correct amount for colleagues? Is $4 an acceptable hong bau?

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Postby phil30k » Mon, 11 Feb 2008 11:49 am

Too late for you but remember this for next year.

Only married people are expected to give out ang pows.

Ideally you give the ang pow to children although technically you could give it to unmarried adults.

It is also treated as a bonus to your workers.

4 sound like "die" so 4 is a poor number. The sum is also always an even number. Sums with 8 are considered lucky. Red is also a good color. Singapore created the $2 bill with ang pows in mind. A single $2 bill will suffice and 2x$2 bills are okay if you are significantly wealthier then colleages (though they sound like die because they are balanced out by being red and even numbered). Otherwise, our $10 bill is also red and ideal for larger packets for blood relatives nieces/nephews etc. Otherwise our $100 bill is orange and also considered acceptable for those really large ang pows to workers if you own the business.

Happy new year.

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flyingfoxx
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Thanks!

Postby flyingfoxx » Mon, 11 Feb 2008 11:54 am

Thanks so much. That was very informative. I am married and wish to give the hong bau's to some of my unmarried colleagues. $2 wont be considered as cheap would it? I don't want to offend anyone by giving $4 if it is unlucky. Besides, since I will be handing out around 15 packets in all $2 would be more economical definitely!

Thanks again. Kung Hei Fat Choi!

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Postby huggybear » Mon, 11 Feb 2008 12:03 pm

if you are foreign i wouldn't do it unless they are your subordinates.
there was an article you can probably find in Asiaone that said the minimum tho this year is $4 sing.

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Mon, 11 Feb 2008 12:14 pm

An article in the daily rag said last year the average amount was $4 but this year the average was $10 due to the better economy. If the ones my wife got over the Holiday/weekend are any indication I would have to agree that $10 is the average amount with the current economy.

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Postby briceloh » Mon, 11 Feb 2008 12:25 pm

If you look at 4 as a even number then it wouldn't be that bad. Especially when you have whole of your children's classmates coming to you. But then again, its the season of giving just like Xmas. Different cultures different ways of sharing the joy.

If $10 may be too heavy on your expenses, try $6 or $8.

But believe me, SGD$4 isn't too bad at all. I still know people who gives out RM$2. :P
IBMing

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Postby phil30k » Mon, 11 Feb 2008 12:26 pm

Well, it's kind of symbolic representation of good wishes for luck and properity.

If your colleages are the kinds of person who comment on whether the christmas cards you send out are expensive or not or take offence at how expensive your valentine's days cards are, or complain when you bring holiday treats back about how cheap those are, or complain if you don't bring presents back from your holidays then they will likely take offence at a $2 ang pow.

You may wish to avoid the money totally and just give them all 2 oranges each.

Then again they may complain about how large and expensive the oranges are.

Some things are best just not worrying about.

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Postby flyingfoxx » Mon, 11 Feb 2008 12:27 pm

This is getting really complicated and confusing. So here's what I've decided. $4 should be a safe amount. Most of the people are colleagues and I just want to show my appreciation and be part of the Singapore culture. There are around 20 of them in all. They are neither my subordinates nor my superiors. Just friendly, helpful colleagues and all I want to do is wish them Good luck!

Thank you for your replies everyone. You have all been very helpful.

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Postby Splatted » Mon, 11 Feb 2008 1:59 pm

Usually it's for kids.

I was told my the mrs, that if it's just your friends and they're the same age, probably don't give anything as they might take offence.

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Postby Wind In My Hair » Mon, 11 Feb 2008 5:34 pm

flyingfoxx wrote:This is getting really complicated and confusing. So here's what I've decided. $4 should be a safe amount. Most of the people are colleagues and I just want to show my appreciation and be part of the Singapore culture. There are around 20 of them in all. They are neither my subordinates nor my superiors. Just friendly, helpful colleagues and all I want to do is wish them Good luck!

Foxx, your intentions are sweet, but giving out angpows willy nilly to all is NOT going to make you part of the Singapore culture, and may even be disrespecting it. We don't give angpows to peers, let alone colleagues. My suggestion is to just say happy new year, wear red or bright colours out of respect, say nice things about their new hairdo, clothes etc. $2 is too little unless they're cleaners etc, and $4 may be taken badly by some. So give $6 or $8 if you really must go against all the advice here. Giving angpows just because you 'feel like it' is not the best thing to do.

ps: I'm local Chinese.

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Postby flyingfoxx » Mon, 11 Feb 2008 6:37 pm

your intentions are sweet, but giving out angpows willy nilly to all is NOT going to make you part of the Singapore culture, and may even be disrespecting it. We don't give angpows to peers, let alone colleagues.


Excuse me, but I am not handing out angows willy nilly to all and sundry. These are members of my team. Where does disrespect come in? I am not trying to "buy" friends here. In my opinion insincere flattery like you suggested is more disrespectful "say nice things about their new hairdo, clothes etc" Maybe that's how you operate. It's not my style.

Just because you don't give angpows to your peers and colleagues does not mean it is disrespectful and that someone else shouldn't do so. It's called the spirit of giving. Just as you give gifts at Christmas. But I guess it's too alien a concept for you to comprehend.

if you really must go against all the advice here. Giving angpows just because you 'feel like it' is not the best thing to do.


None of the replies here indicated that giving angpows was disrespectful. If at all, they were most supportive and enlightening. So I fail to understand what makes you think that everyone is advising me against it. Open your eyes. Not everyone thinks like you do.

The question was how much to give. Not should I give or not. Next time please read the question and answet to the point and if you don't have anything nice to say just keep your petty opinions to yourself. Thank goodness the locals I have met are not cynical and small minded like you.

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Postby Plavt » Mon, 11 Feb 2008 7:26 pm

Flyingfox,
Here's one aspect of the culture you might like to remember as phil30k has pointed out perhaps a little vaguely is; to the best of my knowledge (since I don't and have never lived in the Asian region) people are still by and large superstitious which includes Singapore.

The word for '4' is also the word for death in Chinese, Japanese and Korean. The last time I was in Korea so seriously is it taken that hospitals and hotels didn't have fourth floors! I think the point is you may give offence to the locals without meaning too. Giving food seems to be a good idea although how practical that might be given your circumstances I don't know.

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Postby Superglide » Mon, 11 Feb 2008 7:54 pm

flyingfoxx wrote:
your intentions are sweet, but giving out angpows willy nilly to all is NOT going to make you part of the Singapore culture, and may even be disrespecting it. We don't give angpows to peers, let alone colleagues.


Excuse me, but I am not handing out angows willy nilly to all and sundry. These are members of my team. Where does disrespect come in? I am not trying to "buy" friends here. In my opinion insincere flattery like you suggested is more disrespectful "say nice things about their new hairdo, clothes etc" Maybe that's how you operate. It's not my style.

Just because you don't give angpows to your peers and colleagues does not mean it is disrespectful and that someone else shouldn't do so. It's called the spirit of giving. Just as you give gifts at Christmas. But I guess it's too alien a concept for you to comprehend.

if you really must go against all the advice here. Giving angpows just because you 'feel like it' is not the best thing to do.


None of the replies here indicated that giving angpows was disrespectful. If at all, they were most supportive and enlightening. So I fail to understand what makes you think that everyone is advising me against it. Open your eyes. Not everyone thinks like you do.

The question was how much to give. Not should I give or not. Next time please read the question and answet to the point and if you don't have anything nice to say just keep your petty opinions to yourself. Thank goodness the locals I have met are not cynical and small minded like you.


Get rid of this yearly problem by moving out of Singapore.
If only we could pull out our brain and use only our eyes.
Pablo Picasso

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Postby Saint » Mon, 11 Feb 2008 8:01 pm

Superglide wrote:
flyingfoxx wrote:
your intentions are sweet, but giving out angpows willy nilly to all is NOT going to make you part of the Singapore culture, and may even be disrespecting it. We don't give angpows to peers, let alone colleagues.


Excuse me, but I am not handing out angows willy nilly to all and sundry. These are members of my team. Where does disrespect come in? I am not trying to "buy" friends here. In my opinion insincere flattery like you suggested is more disrespectful "say nice things about their new hairdo, clothes etc" Maybe that's how you operate. It's not my style.

Just because you don't give angpows to your peers and colleagues does not mean it is disrespectful and that someone else shouldn't do so. It's called the spirit of giving. Just as you give gifts at Christmas. But I guess it's too alien a concept for you to comprehend.

if you really must go against all the advice here. Giving angpows just because you 'feel like it' is not the best thing to do.


None of the replies here indicated that giving angpows was disrespectful. If at all, they were most supportive and enlightening. So I fail to understand what makes you think that everyone is advising me against it. Open your eyes. Not everyone thinks like you do.

The question was how much to give. Not should I give or not. Next time please read the question and answet to the point and if you don't have anything nice to say just keep your petty opinions to yourself. Thank goodness the locals I have met are not cynical and small minded like you.


Get rid of this yearly problem by moving out of Singapore.


I wish :( :D

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Postby Plavt » Mon, 11 Feb 2008 8:29 pm

Saint wrote:
I wish :( :D


Hope you have a good supply of oranges, could be a new job for you - growing them. :P :lol:


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