Hong Kong’s Lunar New Year Lai See tradition: How much to give to security guards, foreign domestic helpers and relatives

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    9th February 2024 – (Hong Kong) As the Year of the Dragon arrives, the tradition of giving Lai See, is in full swing. But how much should one give as Lai See? What is the appropriate amount for children, relatives, security guards, and foreign domestic helpers? Let’s delve into the details.

    According to a survey conducted by the Hong Kong Research Association in January 2023, out of 1,007 respondents who indicated that they would give Lai See, the majority (50%) stated that the average amount per envelope was HK$20. The next most common amount was HK$50 (16%). A notable 14% of respondents mentioned that they would give HK$100 or more. However, it is important to note that the amount of Lai See varies depending on the recipient.

    To gain further insights into the appropriate amounts, Gift Something, an online gift store, conducted a survey in 2017. They categorized respondents based on their monthly household income and compiled the recommended Lai See amounts for children, nephews and nieces, friends’ children, security guards, and foreign domestic helpers. Let’s see if your Lai See falls within the suggested ranges:

    For Your Own Children:

    Monthly household income less than $50,000 – HK$10 to HK$300

    Monthly household income between $50,000 and $100,000 – HK$100 to HK$500

    HK$500 to HK$2000

    For Nephews and Nieces:

    Monthly household income less than $50,000 – HK$10 to HK$300

    Monthly household income between $50,000 and $100,000 – HK$100 to HK$500

    Monthly household income above $100,000 – HK$100 to HK$500

    For Foreign Domestic Helpers:

    Monthly household income less than $50,000 – HK$10 to HK$300

    Monthly household income between $50,000 and $100,000 – HK$500 to HK$1000

    Monthly household income above $100,000 – HK$500 to HK$2000

    For Friends’ Children:

    Monthly household income less than $50,000- HK$10 to HK$50

    Monthly household income between $50,000 and $100,000 – HK$10 to HK$100

    Monthly household income above $100,000 – HK$50 to HK$100

    For Security Guards:

    Monthly household income less than $50,000 – HK$10 to HK$50

    Monthly household income between $50,000 and $100,000 – HK$10 to HK$50

    Monthly household income above $100,000 – HK$50 to HK$100

    These recommended ranges provide a general guideline for giving Lai See. However, it is important to consider your personal relationship with the recipient and your own financial situation. Ultimately, the act of giving Lai See is a gesture of goodwill and blessings for the Lunar New Year.