SOUNDS LIKE sing neean kwai lur.
WHAT IT MEANS Happy new year!
WHEN TO SAY IT When you first walk through the door and everyone's too busy playing mahjong to realise how basic you're being anyway.
SOUNDS LIKE kong xee far chai.
WHAT IT MEANS Wishing you wealth.
WHEN TO SAY IT When you want to suck up to your boss even though you already know he's making five times your salary.
SOUNDS LIKE da jee da lee.
WHAT IT MEANS Good luck and may you profit.
WHEN TO SAY IT When you go all in during poker and want to make your opponent fold.
SOUNDS LIKE neean neean yo yuwee.
WHAT IT MEANS May you have an abundant year.
WHEN TO SAY IT When you tuck into a glorious plate of steamed marble goby or pomfret served with salted vegetables. Who wouldn't want to have fish (鱼/yú) every year?
SOUNDS LIKE shun yee sing llong.
WHAT IT MEANS May your business flourish.
WHEN TO SAY IT When you're talking to a tech bro whose side hustles include bitcoin mining or whatever's cool in crypto these days.
SOUNDS LIKE shyue yeah jing boo.
WHAT IT MEANS May your grades improve.
WHEN TO SAY IT When the precocious 11-year-old starts schooling you on how to #staywoke.
SOUNDS LIKE sing hsiang shi chng.
WHAT IT MEANS May your heart's wishes come true.
WHEN TO SAY IT When you spy a hot girl at the party looking a little forlorn because she didn't have a date on V-day.
SOUNDS LIKE shi jee ping ahn kuoh wahng neean.
WHAT IT MEANS Wishing you a whole year of peace.
WHEN TO USE IT For when you really want to show off – upgrade from your typical four-character idioms to this seven-character one. Everyone will be saying 'wah your Chinese so good ah?' in no time.