Lunar New Year

Lunar New Year Safety Tips

Staying safe during the Lunar New Year festivities 

Each February, San Francisco celebrates the Lunar New Year with our city’s world-famous parade – the largest in the United States. The parades began in the 1860s and today never fail to draw huge crowds. The Chinese New Year Parade will be held on February 24, 2024. Please click here to view more info regarding this year's parade and festivities.

Beware of Scams and Beware of your Surroundings!

Unfortunately, the Lunar New Year is a peak time for scammers. We urge you to beware of strangers seeking cash in exchange for curing your illness or lifting a curse.  If you are approached by a potential scammer, we urge you to contact the police at our non-emergency number: 1-415-553-0123. You can also call our Tip Line at 1-415-558-5588 or Text a Tip to TIP411 and begin the text message with SFPD.

Vaccine Scams

While vaccination details are still being worked out here's what you can be sure of:

  • You cannot pay to put your name on a list to get the vaccine. That's a scam.

  • You cannot pay to get early access to the vaccine. That’s a scam.

  • No healthcare provide or government entity will call about the vaccine and ask for your Social Security, bank account, or credit card number. That’s a scam.

  • Information surrounding vaccine scams is constantly growing - stay informed by visiting the Federal Trade Commission site on vaccine scams.

Safety Tips

  • The festivities are about celebrating community. Look out for each other and report any suspicious persons or activity to event staff or a police officer. A good adage is, “If you see something, say something.” In an emergency, call 9-1-1. To provide an anonymous tip, call the SFPD Anonymous Tip Line at 1-415-575- 4444.
  • Stay informed by signing up for emergency text message alerts by texting the word AlertSF to 888-777. AlertSF allows us to notify you of emergencies in San Francisco.
  • Keep your friends close and your drinks closer. Don’t accept drinks from strangers. Drink responsibly and don’t drink and drive - always use a designated driver.
  • The San Francisco Bay Area has a host of public transit options that will get you to, from, and around Lunar New Year events.
  • If you drive to the festivities, remember to “Park Smart!” Take your valuables with you- don’t leave them inside your car.
  • Maintain possession of your cell phone, wallet, and other valuables.
  • There is safety in numbers. Stay with a group when on the street or leaving bars and clubs. Be cautious about leaving a bar or club with a stranger. A rule of thumb is that if you feel “unsure” about someone, rely on that instinct and do not go with that person.

San Francisco Police also urge all members of the Chinese community to be suspicious of strangers claiming to provide relief from a curse or illness or those who provide “purification” ceremonies in which cash and valuable items must be offered as part of the process.

Anyone who is confronted by scammers or anyone who knows of an elder who was approached by scammers are strongly advised to contact the police. Reports can be made at any SFPD District Station or by calling Dispatch at 1-415-553-0123 and requesting an officer to take a report.

Cantonese or Mandarin speakers can leave tips on a special tip line by calling 1-415- 558-5588. Information can also be called into the Anonymous Tip Line at 1-415-575- 4444 or via Text a Tip by texting a message to TIP411 and beginning the message with SFPD.