5.20: What Are Chinese People Excited About Today?!

Swan Huang   |   August 31, 2021

For many expats in China, today May 20th is going to be another ‘what the hell’ kind of day.

If you are single, get ready to be pissed off by all the restaurants being occupied (even those expensive and awful tasting places), people selling flowers to you even though you are walking alone, crowds of Chinese couples getting pre-wedding photos at fake western places like Thames Town in Shanghai and discount sales ad pop-outs from all sorts of China apps. Probably later tonight at around dinner time, your WeChat will be full of couples’ pictures saying:” 宝贝,我爱你!” (Baby I love you).

So what on earth makes 5.20 so special? (Search WeChat official account RINGYRINGY to know more about this topic)

In Chinese, 520 is pronounced like: “woo are leen”. This is a bit of a stretch (actually, all of these are horrible stretches – and yet they are commonly accepted and understood) it sounds like “whoa eye knee”, which means “I love you”. 

This photo studio for engaged couples clearly gets it – check out their ad: The price point is 520 yuan. Even their phone number on the right is 520 with a few 8’s thrown in for good fortune. 

If you are still typing one letter at a time to make long sentences with your sausage-sized digits, here are some examples of Chinese number phrases to increase your efficiency.


In Chinese, this sounds like”baa-baa”. Again a bit of a stretch, it sounds like”bye-bye”. Next time you are chatting with your Chinese girlfriend online, and it’s time to go…try saying “88”.


3 in Chinese is pronounced “san” and when it’s followed by the letter Q, it sounds pretty closed to Chinglish, “Thank you”. 


A useful one – “I want you”. 


This sounds like a Chinese expression meaning from birth until death. You can use it to mean “forever”. 

Now be creative: can you guess the meaning of 5201314?


If your Chinese girlfriend/boyfriend is being mad at you, try 555. That’s the sound of crying in Chinese “呜呜呜” pronounced “woo woo woo”. A “555” plus “我错了” (my fault) might help you get back your Chinese love easily. 

You might wonder why Chinese people like celebrating every single day as a holiday. 

People do this as a way to make every day in their lives as meaningful as possible. Somehow businesses ended up taking advantage of this by launching sales promotions, but Chinese people still buy into it because that’s what’s important to them.

It’s time for you to prepare a 5.20 yuan red envelope for your love now! XD

Follow official WeChat account:RINGYRINGY and send them messages if you would like to say something nice in Chinese to your love. Translation with Pinyin and audio teaching is available! Instead of machine translation, they are local Chinese that know the tricks and the right tone. ;p