How to obtain a (decent) Chinese name? 

Recently, a friend asked for advise on obtaining a Chinese name. I recommended him using one of the Chinese name generator sites and give him some ideas. 

Examples, one of the websites provides a few options on what attribute of the personality you want in the name.

Chinese names generally have 3 characters. The surname, which is usually 1 character, always comes first. For example, Smith 先生 Xīangshēng,Mr. Smith. 

Next are one or two characters which are chosen by the parents (or the grandparents in traditional Chinese culture).  His name is Thomas, and he got a few choices by using the online tools, here are his favorite ones (by sounds and meaning). 

1. 蓝天翰 Lán tīan hūi. 

蓝 - Last name. Also color blue

天 - Day, sky, God (because it is in the sky).

翰 - Writing

2.蓝晀辉 Lán tíao hūi

蓝 - Last name. Also color blue

晀 - Gaze at

辉 - Brightness, brilliance 

3.梁坦豪 Līang tǎn háo 

梁 - Last Name

坦 - Smooth, open

豪 - Bravery, heroic 

When it comes to picking a Chinese name, make sure you can pronounce it easily and it is easy to remember. There are so many different websites that can help you generate a legit Chinese name, but it is always a good idea to validate with a native Chinese person to ensure the name fits you and it is modern.  

  • Mandarin Tools:
  • Cultural China:

Keep in mind, getting a Chinese name is different than translating your English name into Chinese characters. The names you get on these sites are completely unrelated with your English name. They might take your last name into considerations, for example, if you last name starts with L, then the Chinese last name might be with a L sound in Pinyin. 

So, what is your Chinese name? Mine is 俞宜慧 :)