SINGAPORE – Long queues formed at some banks and cash deposit machines on the Chinese auspicious day of Li Chun, which falls on Sunday (Feb 4) this year.
Many people believe that depositing money on Li Chun, also known as Farmers’ Day, can help grow their wealth and ensure good luck in the new year.
Snaking lines were seen at Waterway Point in Punggol, Tampines Central and Bedok Town Centre from early morning, with several people – clad in red – clutching their cash as they waited in line.
Instagram user koon.j.yu, who passed by the OCBC branch at Tampines Central, snapped a photo of the queue and wrote: “May everyone have a huat Li Chun 2018.”
Others, such as user kitty_chan72, beamed in photos of themselves at the cash deposit machine.
According to the tradition, which has caught on here only in recent years, it is essential to bank in money at the appropriate times according to one’s Chinese zodiac.
Since the start of the year, at least three such timetables detailing the various auspicious or very auspicious timings have surfaced online.
For instance, it will be the “luckiest” for those born in the year of the Tiger, Dragon, Snake, Goat and Dog to do so between 11am and 12.59pm, according to one such timetable.
The tables also advise when not to deposit money.
This year, some people have also turned to technology to help them beat the queues, choosing instead to deposit money into their e-wallets.
DBS has said that customers who do so using its PayLah app on Li Chun could win $88.
Meanwhile, OCBC Bank rolled out a Li Chun promotion on Sunday to attract customers, who will enjoy an interest rate of 1.08 per cent per annum for a minimum deposit amount of $18,000.
It added that OCBC Premier Banking customers will enjoy an interest rate of 1.18 per cent per annum for $38,000.
Li Chun usually falls between Feb 3 and 18 and marks the start of spring in the Chinese calendar. It was traditionally an important day for farmers in ancient China who would pray for a good harvest.