How to say Happy Diwali - and mean it Image Credit: Getty

Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights, is a time of merriment, the signifier of good against evil and the celebration of knowledge over ignorance. It is the marker of new beginnings.

The festival is a kaleidoscope of colour. Traditionally, it’s an evening to spend with family and friends and usher in good fortune. If you are in the UAE, like most things, the celebrations take on a grander-than-usual hue.

While the celebrations can be a tad intimidating, knowing how to wish those celebrating is sure to smooth the way. While a Happy Diwali works just as well, we suggest adding some personal touches.

Say this

Here’s a look at some options – feel free to mix and match to get the phrase that suits the situation best.

1. May good fortune light up your year just like diyas brighten up a room. Happy Diwali.

2. May Diwali usher in a rain of wealth and prosperity for you and your family.

3. May your life be as bright and positive as the colours of Rangoli. Have a blessed Diwali.

4. May the cheer of tonight spread throughout the year and the richness of laughter follow. Happy Diwali.

5. May the light of Diwali burn away all misfortune and bless you with a year as sweet as the mithais (Indian sweets) you eat. Wishing you a very happy and blessed Diwali.

Presents anyone?

Gift giving is a complicated field of landmines at the best of times, but don’t let this get you down. If you are looking for a way to join in the celebrations, here’s a look at some easy options that will not break the bank.

1. Sweets: Traditional fare from sweet shops are bound to be a hit if you are headed to a friend's house. Most places will also have boxes especially designed - with ribbons, messages of cheer and more - for this time.

2. Dry fruits:These are another good option; they say you care about the health of the recipient.

3. Diyas: Or traditional lanterns make for great gifts as this is the festival of lights - and these are considered a symbol of knowledge, happiness, peace, wisdom, truth and prosperity. You can also replace these with good looking candles.

Should you wear a new outfit?

Tradition says yes to new outfit - Diwali signifies the end of a year and the start of another, as per the Indian calander. It signifies a spring cleaning of emotion.