The term …… New Year is really not a native word in Vietnam, we generally call it Tết Ta (Our Tết) to differentiates with Tết Tây (Westerner Tết). Tet Ta being the Lunar New Year while Tet Tay being the 01/01 normal New Year since Vietnamese legally & officially celebrate both those holidays.
So, I personally don’t get offended, you could call it whatever you are comfortable with it would be nice if you call it Tet when you are in Vietnam or with Vietnamese for easier clarification but people don’t care much and they won’t get mad at you, don’t worry.
In Vietnam many people claims that Tet is a tradition exclusively native to Vietnam and that it have nothing to do with China (even giving a lot of evidences for their claims). But overwhelming majority of people recognize that since Tet is based on the Lunar New Year and Lunar Calendar is a Chinese creation, it has to have some direct relations with China. So the Sino nature of the holiday is without much doubts in Vietnam.
However, just because it is related China, does not make it less Vietnamese, in fact still is very Vietnamese. We celebrate it in our own date, our own tradditions adding on top of the core Sinospheric ones, we have our own practices, our own songs and activities for it and through generations making it a very holy holiday for all Vietnamese regardless of background. And every Vietnamese can be proud that this holiday is theirs and only theirs. Those above are additions to the core Lunar New Year traditions of course.
In the Vietnamese core of Tet, we Vietnamese make bánh trưng & bánh giầy(dày) representing the bountiful of earth (chưng) and the limitless nature of the sky (giầy/dày). The myth on the creation of these foods are as old as Vietnam itself even pre-date northern rule of Vietnam. A roughly 2,500–3,000+ years old cooking recipe that is still maintained today everytime the mai and đào trees reveals their beauty. The fact Vietnamese still making these after all this time warms my heart sometimes.
bánh trưng & bánh giầy(dày) through times:
Outside of those two, Vietnamese also celebrate it like the rest of the Lunar New Year world, and with many other unique Vietnamese practices that you could search deeper into if you are interested.
To sums it up:
Tet itself is innocent so please don’t make a venerable holiday into a political debate, let’s all appreciate the holiday for what it is and celebrate it in the most civilized and decent way like our ancestors did. A time of the year where you could relax and bring our mind back home, to your roots, to your family and to yourself, to feels the cultural progress of the nation after centuries, because at the end of the day,
không có người con dân đất Việt nào ăn Tết, ngày lễ thiêng liêng nhất của toàn dân, của dân tộc mà lại nghĩ là mình đang ăn Tết Tàu cả.