The different types of joss paper.

Photo taken in Bangkok, Thailand

Joss paper, spirit money, or ghost money burning is a primary part of the Chinese/Taoist customs. It is believed that the burning of different types of joss paper can send electronics, food, clothes to the deceased ancestors allowing them to survive comfortably in the afterlife. It is also believed that the dead should not reach the gates of immortality with debt or with no money. Thus, when someone dies in Chinese tradition, 银纸批发 is burnt to pay off the debts and allow the ancestor to enter the realm with some money.

Here are 4 different types of joss papers that are used in the Chinese tradition:

Dabai Shoujin

This is the longevity paper. It has large paper squares. These squares have a golden metallic rectangle on them that has been imprinted with Shou, Lu, and Fu. These papers are used as offerings to deities of the heavens. 


This type of joss paper has large squares of paper. These squares have a golden rectangle that is metallic. This joss paper can be used for offering to deities of any level. 


These are large joss papers. These joss papers have squares with gold metallic rectangles. These rectangles are printed with angled characters and shapes. The characters used are popular in the southern region of Taiwan. These types of joss papers are mainly used to offer the spiritual soldiers of deities.


These are small joss papers. They have small squares of paper with a metallic silver rectangle. These ate burned for close ancestors, spirits, and relatives.


These are joss papers used to supply the ancestors with the items they may require as part of their daily necessities. Items sent through this joss paper are cups, shoes, clothes, scissors, etc. The items ate oriented on the surface of the card. 

Contemporary joss papers

300 piece joss paper collection.

These are available in three different designs. It is perfect for ancestors’ birthdays, funerals, hungry ghosts, and Qingming Festival. 

ZeeStar Chinese joss paper

Made from either gold or white bamboo paper, these joss papers are burnt after the ancestor’s passing to send goods and money to the ancestor. Joss paper Malaysia is used during hungry ghost festivals, Qingming festivals, birthdays, and funerals. 

Value traded joss papers.

These joss paper notes can be referred to as heaven hell notes. These are used to resemble banknotes used in China during the late 19 century. 

Burning of the joss paper

There is no specific mannerism of burning a joss paper. However, the important part during the burning process is that the family respects the person who has passed. In the Chinese tradition, when trying to appease restless spirits, fruits or food must be placed either on the ground or on the altar. The incense sticks should be lighted, and the family must pray. After a few minutes have passed and before the incense sticks get extinguished, the joss paper must be taken in both hands, the wish should be presented, and the paper burned.