Controversy erupts over HK$10 lai see from wealthy relative: “The less affluent are more generous”

AI-generated image for illustration purpose only.

13th February 2024 – (Hong Kong) The significance of lai see has always attracted attention. Recently, a homeowner expressed dissatisfaction, complaining about a wealthy relative who consistently gives them a hK$10 lai see each year. This seemingly small gesture has become a source of ongoing resentment. While netizens offered words of wisdom to console the homeowner, they also reminded them of an important perspective.

The homeowner voiced their frustration, saying, “I have a wealthy relative who always gives me a HK$10 lai see…”. Although lai sees are symbolic, their underlying meaning is highly scrutinised.

The homeowner continued, “If they were an average person who didn’t constantly boast about their wealth, I wouldn’t mind receiving a mere HK$10.”

Netizens empathised with the homeowner’s sentiment and responded in solidarity. Some expressed their frustration, saying, “HK$10 is hardly worth giving; even the minimum I would give is HK$20.” They couldn’t help but quote popular sayings to remind the homeowner of a valuable lesson:

“Generosity is not measured by the amount given, but by the heart behind it.”

They further commented, “The more money one has, the lonelier one becomes. Are you starting to realize this now?” Another netizen remarked, “The wealthier people are, the stingier they become.”

Netizens also pointed out, “Haven’t you heard the saying? The wealthy are stingy with a grand gesture, while the less affluent are generous with caution. If you can’t match their generosity, why bother being polite? Just give their children a HK$10 red envelope in return.” Some even suggested, “Give them back HK$1; play their game.”

However, there were also netizens who took a more accepting stance, advising the homeowner, “It’s their money, their choice. There’s no rule saying that wealthy people can’t give a HK$10 red envelope. You could also give them a HK$1 Chinese yuan red envelope in return.”

Given the mention of the relative’s business, some netizens analyzed the situation from a business perspective, stating:

“If they’re in business, perhaps they’re giving you a HK$10 red envelope as a symbolic gesture. They might think they’re being generous, considering their financial success.”