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Chinese New Year Restaurant Promotion Ideas for 2024

Last Updated: May 3, 2024

As the Chinese community is preparing for the festivities of this annual holiday, restaurateurs are getting busier, cooking up special deals and promotions.

They also must optimize and update their menus to highlight Chinese delicacies, which can be a burden since you’d have to produce and print new menus.

Worry no more because when you use an interactive digital QR code menu software, you can complete the editing process in no time. 

This easy-to-use restaurant management tool is compatible with different devices like computers, tablets, and smartphones, which is favorable whenever you need to update your menu offerings. 

Here are some fun and worthwhile marketing ideas and menu inclusions for this grand celebration. 

Preparation you need when creating Lunar New Year restaurant deals 

There are several factors to consider when making effective and appealing restaurant promotions for the Chinese New Year.

QR code menu
QR code menu for Chinese New Year

First, understand your target audience's demographics, behavior, preferences, and needs. This step is crucial because it will help you create restaurant menu and promotions tailored to their interests, making them more personalized and advantageous for them. 

For example, are your customers mostly young or old? What are their habits? Are they students or working professionals? What drives them to dine out? What is their lifestyle?

Knowing the answers to these questions will help you better understand your target market.

Second, decide on the type of promotion appealing to your target audience and aligning with your promotional goals; it could be a discount, a free item, a loyalty program, or a special food item like the Chinese New Year menu.

Third, choose the best way to advertise your offer. Ensure that the promotion channel you are eyeing will reach your target audience and potential customers.

Some options for promoting the offer include social media, email, in-restaurant signage, online listings, and influencer marketing—whatever will catch your audience's interest. 

Lastly, measure the success of your promotion to make sure that your Chinese New Year restaurant deals go off without a hitch. Set clear goals, analyze the results, and make necessary adjustments. Doing so will help you curate effective promotions and achieve positive results.

5 Best Chinese New Year restaurant promotion ideas 

QR code menu on table tent
Sample photo of a QR code menu

Initiate a social media contest

People love free stuff. Who doesn’t? This is the time to take advantage of that by offering them something they can't resist. 

Ask your followers on Instagram or TikTok to post their favorite Chinese food at your restaurant, write an engaging caption, and tag three friends. The winner will get a free meal voucher valid before the Chinese New Year celebration ends. 

Social media contests are a great strategy to build awareness about an item or a product. Take advantage of this promotional strategy. It will surely work since many use them daily.

Promote through influencers

Collaborate with an influencer on a promotion or campaign highlighting your restaurants and special offers. They will promote your restaurant to their followers and subscribers, telling people why they should dine there.

You must go to influencers with a solid niche and a huge following to guarantee that more people will engage with your promotion. It’s also great if your influencer suits your target audience so they can easily relate to the content.

If you’re targeting young audiences, go for a youthful and quirky influencer. Meanwhile, an influencer with a professional and formal vibe will work for more mature demographics.

Hashtags works 

Using hashtags in your posts is a great way to get more followers. 

Post mouthwatering images of special items you are offering at a discounted price. Then, write a compelling caption and conclude it with hashtags. 

You can use community hashtags like #chineserestaurant, #chinesefood, and #chinesecuisine to maximize your post’s engagement.

And since you add up to 30 hashtags on a post, you can also combine other relevant and popular hashtags that your competitors use. 

Hashtags on your promotional posts will make it easier for users to engage with your content and increase brand awareness and reach. 

Fixed-price offerings

The interactive menu QR code has sales analytics, which helps you quickly identify the least popular items. 

Set up promotions by attaching dishes that aren't selling to more popular ones at a discounted price. Add a new food category to your online menu and label them “holiday specials.”

For restaurant businesses, prix fixe menus are an excellent way to attract customers and drive more sales.

Happy hour

Another promotion for restaurants you may consider when having downtime is happy hour. Offer complimentary appetizers with the purchase of a drink or offer a buy one get one deal. 

Implementing this marketing tactic right can encourage customers to try new items on your food and drink menu, thus driving traffic and increasing sales.

8 Chinese New Year foods and symbols you can include in your restaurant promotions 

Did you know that each dish served on Chinese New Year has a symbolic meaning? Here are some popular Chinese food and their symbols, and you may include them in your special Chinese New Year menu.


‘Fish,' which translates to ‘yu’ in Chinese, sounds like ‘shengyu’ or ‘surplus,’ which implies abundance, unity, and prosperity.

A fish dish for Chinese New Year

According to Feng Shui, eating fish during Chinese New Year will bring good luck and abundance in the coming year. 


Dumplings are a traditional Chinese dish considered lucky food for the Chinese New Year because they symbolize wealth and prosperity.

Steamed dumplings

These resemble the boat-shaped Chinese gold and silver ingots used as a currency in ancient China. There is a belief that the more dumplings you consume during Chinese New Year, the more money you will earn throughout the year.


Noodles aren't only a staple in Chinese cuisine; they are also considered lucky foods to serve during the Chinese New Year and other special occasions. 

Noodle in a bowl

Because noodles are long, it symbolize longevity in Chinese culture. Eating them is believed to bring good luck and long life. But remember not to cut the noodles as you prepare; it can bring you a bad omen. 

Whole chicken 

Whole chicken
Whole chicken in a baking pan

According to Chinese culture, a whole chicken symbolizes completeness and unity. The Chinese believe eating it will bring good luck and fortune for the upcoming year. 

Lion's head meatballs

Lion's meatballs
Lion's head meatballs in bowl

This dish isn't actually made from a lion's head. It's mainly made of pork seasoned with soy sauce, ginger, garlic, and a touch of sesame oil, then simmered in a chicken broth-soy sauce.

This delicacy got its name from the meatball's shape, which resembles the head of a Chinese guardian lion. 

It is an essential dish for every special occasion because, in Chinese culture, the lion symbolizes power, while large meatballs symbolize family unity.

Sweet rice balls 

Sweet rice balls
Rice balls drenched in syrup

Sweet rice balls, or ‘tangyuan' in Chinese, are considered lucky because their round shape symbolizes unity and togetherness. 

Also, the Chinese believe that the sweet glutinous rice used to make ‘tangyuan' will bring prosperity in the coming year. 


Shrimp dish with parsley and sesame seeds

Shrimp is ‘xia’ in Chinese and ‘ha’ in Cantonese; both words mean laughter.

For this reason, the Chinese believe that serving shrimp on the Chinese New Year will bring them happiness throughout the year.

Steamed pork belly with taro 

Steamed pork belly with taro 
Pork dish in a bowl

Pork represents a prosperous life, strength, and abundant blessings. Meanwhile, the taro symbolizes wealth, good luck, and prosperity. 

This is why this dish is typically shared with friends and family, adding to its association with togetherness. 

Ways to promote your restaurant specials on the QR code menu 

Label new and bestseller items 

Labeling new and bestseller items is one way to direct customers' attention to such things. 

This strategy can influence customers' purchasing decisions so that they will think labeled items are worth trying. 

The good thing about having a digital menu QR code is that you can edit it anytime, which is efficient, especially when making urgent menu updates.

After saving the changes, edits will automatically reflect in real-time on the menu. 

Highlight special dishes

When you feature a dish on your QR code menu, it is easier for the customers to notice it once they access the online menu. 

You can add images to each food item to catch their attention, likely encouraging them to purchase such items. 

Run a promotion on the built-in website of the QR code menu

Running a scheduled promotion on the interactive restaurant digital menu will save you time and effort. How is that so?

This QR code based restaurant menu software has different promotions; you only need to choose one from those choices to start preparing.

You can set the time and date to start and display the promotion. And to make it more appealing, add an image of your special deal. 

Have a prosperous Chinese New Year celebration with the help of a digital menu

Creating and implementing a Chinese New Year restaurant promotion is challenging, as it requires time, effort, and energy.

But with MENU TIGER, you can still operate smoothly on this busy holiday. This software can help you streamline operations, create engaging promotions, and provide quality customer service.

Go to the interactive QR code menu software and start your 14-day free trial today.

Junah Cen

Junah Cen is the type of Content Writer who uses her teaching profession to weave digestible and accurate content filled with SEO-friendly magic for the SaaS and Hospitality Industries. Off-duty, Junah's zeal for church activities, connecting with youth, and voracious reading define her vibrant world.