Linh Trinh Produced by
from Vietnam

MA Marketing Communications

Lunar New Year is the most important holiday in many Asia countries based on the lunar calendar. It is a special occasion to be with your loved ones, looking back to what you have achieved over the past year and looking forward to good things ahead. 2022 marks my first year celebrating Lunar New Year away from home as an international student. Follow me to discover how I celebrate this special occasion in the UK.

Stay connected with my family and friends

I come from Vietnam, where it is 7 hours’ time difference from the UK, so my Lunar New Year or Tết came early this year. Normally, on this special occasion, all my family gathers together in our cosy living room and watch a special programme on TV while having some snacks and waiting for the clock to turn to midnight.

Given the time and distance difference this year, I could not come back to Vietnam to celebrate this special occasion with my family. Instead, I scheduled a call with them in advance to chat and send them my best wishes so we can still virtually enjoy this moment together.

Some of my friends studying in the UK also take this occasion to call and catch up with each other so we will not feel homesick and lonely during this time. Listening to each other’s stories help us see how much we have grown over the past year. Going to the UK and studying abroad is undoubtedly a life-changing decision for many of us. We are proud to make this far and encourage each other to make the most of this journey in 2022.

Introduce Vietnamese culture to my friends in the UK

Food plays an essential part in Vietnamese culture when celebrating Tết. I want to take this opportunity to introduce some of the traditional food that we usually have in Tết to my friend in the UK. One of the good things when living in Bournemouth is that the town has some Asia supermarkets to get the ingredients to recreate your home food.

I tried to make Vietnamese spring rolls and share them with my housemate this time. Doing this not only helps me feel less homesick, but it also brings my culture closer to my friend in the UK.

Embrace the change

Staying away from home during Lunar New Year could be challenging, especially when you see lots of photos and videos on social media. However, this is also a golden chance for you to grow, see more values in you and embrace your culture. Going through all these experiences will make your journey in the UK more memorable. I never knew that I could miss all the traditions this much till I was away from home.

If this is also your first time studying abroad, your first time celebrating Lunar New Year away from home, I hope you will embrace all these changes and look forward to having an unforgettable journey in the UK. Remember, you can always connect with other students from your country by joining the student community. For example, Bournemouth VietSoc organised a cosy event for students studying at Bournemouth University to gather and celebrate Tết together.

With the year of Tiger welcoming us, I wish you all a new year full of health, happiness and adventures. Chúc mừng năm mới!

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