Birthday Traditions Around the World
One of the most celebrated days in a person’s life is the day they are born. Your birthday marks your entrance into the world. Throughout life, your date of birth becomes a part of your identity. And most importantly, it’s the day friends and family use to celebrate you; it is your own personal holiday.
Birthdays are celebrated across countries and cultures, but often the festivities can look very different.
Let’s take a look at how you could celebrate your special day throughout the world!
CANADA: In Canada, you have to watch out on your birthday or you’ll get a greased nose! Friends and family will try to sneak up on you and rub butter on your nose so you’re too slippery for bad luck.
EGYPT: You’ll want to have a couple cakes to feed all your guests in case you find yourself in Egypt for your birthday! Celebrating here, you’re in for a big party with tons of loved ones coming to celebrate with you.
CHINA & PHILIPPINES: If you’re in China or the Philippines for your birthday, you’ll eat longevity noodles. These noodles symbolize long life—a wish for many more birthdays to come!
AUSTRALIA: In Australia, rather than a cake, you’ll celebrate with “fairy bread” or buttered slices of white bread topped with colorful sprinkles.
GHANA: You’ll begin your special day in Ghana with a breakfast of oto. This is a dish made of sweet potatoes and onions fried into patties and served with hard-boiled eggs.
IRELAND & ISRAEL: You’ll be swept off your feet if you spend your birthday in Ireland or Israel! In Ireland, you may be “bumped” as friends grab your arms and legs and hoist you into the air. In Israel, you’ll be lifted too but from the comfort of a chair.
RUSSIA: If you’re celebrating your birthday in Russia, you’ll be receiving cards filled with heartfelt well-wishes and kind words from loved ones.
GERMANY: In Germany, your guests will make sure both to arrive and leave on time. You may also be woken up with a birthday cake—but be sure not to blow out the candles till dinner!
INDIA: When people bring you birthday gifts in India, they’ll be pretty colorful! For example, black or white wrapping would be a sign of bad luck.
No matter where in the world you spend your birthday, there are many ways to celebrate. We hope you enjoy your special day!