Chinese New Year is almost here and many people are planning their reunions and celebrations with family and friends. The Malaysian government has announced rules and regulations for the festive period aimed to preserve health and safety and curb the spread of the Omicron variant.
Besides the usual general Standard Operating Procedures for gatherings – everyone must have received two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine, must check in with MySejahtera where necessary and must maintain social distancing – there are a few specific rules for CNY 2022.
Family reunion dinners (31 January CNY eve)
- Family reunion dinners are allowed at home or at restaurants
- Family reunion dinners at home must be compliant with SOPs – the venue must be at 50% capacity with enough space for social distancing.
Get everyone to complete an at-home COVID-19 saliva test before congregating for the reunion dinner. This will ensure peace of mind for everyone and protect the vulnerable seniors and children.
Prayer ceremonies (1 & 2 February)
- Prayers are allowed at home, with all normal SOPs being followed.
- Prayers are allowed in houses of worship in accordance with the government’s SOPs for Opening Houses of Worship.
Find out in advance if your house of worship has a schedule for prayers and if they require you to book your attendance. Children under 12 years old are also not encouraged to attend prayers at houses of worship.
Hokkien Clan special prayers (8 & 9 February) & Chap Goh Mei prayers (15 February)
- Hokkien Clan special prayer activities are allowed at home or in the house compound, with all normal SOPs being followed.
- All Hokkien Clan special prayer activities are allowed in houses of worship in accordance with the SOPs for Opening Houses of Worship.
- Chap Goh Meh prayer activities at home or in houses of worship allowed in accordance with SOPs.
Ensure your house is well ventilated or hold activities outside as per tradition. Even though everyone is outside, you should still adhere to SOPs, especially when it comes to food & beverage, and social distancing.
Receptions and parties
Chinese New Year receptions are allowed at home or at other venues but open houses are not allowed. Besides the usual SOPs, receptions are:
- Only allowed for invited guests
- Not allowed to the public who are not invited
- Should not be an on-going function such as an open house
- Allowed with 50% space capacity and physical distancing in place
Even if you are unable to fit all your friends and family into one place for a reception, you can still catch up with them online. Organise a special CNY virtual get-together where you exchange news, play games and even exchange ang pao online!
Lion, dragon or tiger dance performances
Lion, dragon or tiger dance performances are allowed subject to compliance to the Creative Industry SOPs: (Live Presentation).
The best lion, dragon or tiger dances are always those that are held outside in the fresh air! Having this event outdoors would also likely provide more space for spectators.