Professor Rachel Chu
Played By: Constance Wu
A Chinese-American economics professor at NYU who is invited to meet her boyfriend Nick's family in the first book.
- Affluent Ascetic: Even after she marries Nick, she balks at spending too much of his money, and her taste in fashion and jewelry remains Simple, yet Opulent. She does admit to enjoying being pampered by the family's maids, but always with a twinge of guilt and a determination to be Nice to the Waiter.
- Beauty Equals Goodness: She's good looking, level-headed, diplomatic, humble, educated, and The Hero of the novels.
- Beware the Nice Ones: She is a very diplomatic, pleasant, and forgiving woman but the behaviors of some of the wealthy (i.e. Eleanor Young, Colette Bing to name) have pushed her to tell them off for their lack of character and regard for others.
- Disappeared Dad: Rachel has never known her father and her mother told her that he died before she was born. This turns out not to be the case.
- Fish out of Water: Middle-class Rachel is out of place with the Singaporean upper class.
- Heroic Bastard: She's born out of an affair her mother Kerry had with a friend named Kao Wei.
- Hero with Bad Publicity: The entire family except for Astrid thinks she is a Gold Digger.
- Meaningful Rename: Learns at the end of the first book that her name at birth was Zhou An Mei, but Kerry changed both their names so her abusive husband's family couldn't track them down in America. note .
- Mistaken Nationality: Poor intelligence led Eleanor to believe she was from "the Taipei Plastics Chus." It turns out she was born in mainland China.
- Rich Suitor, Poor Suitor: She's the poor suitor to all of Nick's old flames since she's not particularly wealthy and doesn't have great connections.
Professor Nicholas Young
Played By: Henry Golding
A Singaporean history professor at NYU and Rachel's boyfriend at the beginning of the first book.
- Didn't Think This Through: He didn't think to tell Rachel about how wealthy and snobbish his family is, which causes a few problems.
- For Happiness: He doesn't let his high-class background define him as a person, and only cares about being together with the one who makes him the happiest.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Colin Khoo.
- I Am Very British: He has a posh British accent because he apparently grew up studying in fancy British schools.
- Lost Food Grievance: In Rich People Problems, his frustration with Singapore's changing values comes to a head when he discovers that his favorite noodle place is becoming a designer boutique. This gives him the determination he needs to save Tyersall Park from being sold.
- Nice to the Waiter: Close with all the servants at Tyersall Park and never takes unfair advantage of his position over them.
- Obsessed with Food: His first priority when he and Rachel arrive in Singapore is figuring out which classic local dish to introduce to her first.
- Raised by Grandparents: His grandmother did most of the job raising him.
- Secretly Wealthy: The Young family is very secretive about their wealth, and Nick is no exception. One reason is that he wanted to form genuine attachments to people without having hangers-on who were only interested in his money.
- Uptown Girl: A male version since his family is very wealthy and connected and Rachel is not.
Shang Su Yi
Played By: Lisa Lu
Wife of Sir James Young and mother of Felicity, Catherine, Philip, Victoria and Alexandra Young. Has a brother named Alfred.
- Affectionate Nickname: Referred to as "Ah Ma" by the grandchildren.
- Belated Backstory: We learn more about her in Rich People Problems, the third book.
- Grande Dame: She is the owner and chatelaine of Tyersall Park and rules over her family with a silk-covered iron fist.
- Hero of Another Story: She helped hide British soldiers from the Japanese Army during World War II.
- Parental Favoritism: As revealed by her daughter, Victoria, in the third book, due to Philip being her only son, she spoiled him with everything, while her daughters were basically given a hard time for everything.
- Pet the Dog:
Astrid: Xiexie ni, Ah Ma. (Thank you, Ah Ma.)Su Yi: Yijia ren bu yong shuo xie, a. (Family never says thank you.)
- At her will reading, she wills her Malaysian estate to her grandson Alexander Leong, even noting that it's a shame she didn't get to see his children and wife and uses it as a jab against her daughter and son-in-law for disowning him.
- In the film, she accompanies Astrid to Colin and Aramintas wedding after Astrid and Michael have an argument.
- Widow Woman: Her husband Sir James died many years ago.
Sir James Young
Shang Su Yi's deceased husband, a neurologist.
- Hero of Another Story: Saved many lives during the Japanese occupation of Singapore during World War II, including Dr. Gu.
- Parental Substitute: To Su Yi's daughter Catherine, who he raised as his own child.
- Posthumous Character: Sir James has been dead for an unknown amount of time before the story began.
- Understanding Boyfriend: Er, husband. According to Nick, he was aware of how saintly his grandfather was, but amazed when he finds out that Sir James accepted Su Yi back with open arms despite carrying another man's baby and even doted on Catherine like she was his own child.
Nick's aunt, Shang Su Yi's third daughter and second-youngest child.
- Holier Than Thou: The most devoutly Christian of the Young sisters, as she never fails to remind everyone. She even attempts a deathbed conversion for Su Yi, who's having none of it.
- Maiden Aunt: The only one of Su Yi's children never to marry.
- The Resenter: Of Philip. Her childhood memories show that Su Yi was much more indulgent with her only son than with any of her four daughters.
Puan Sri Felicity Leong, nee Young
Played By: Janice Koh
Shang Su Yi's eldest daughter. Married to Harry Leong and mother of Henry, Peter, Alexander and Astrid.
- Doting Grandparent: Gushes over Cassian despite being overbearing and judgmental with Astrid.
- I Have No Son!: She and Harry disinherited Alexander because he married a Malaysian woman.
- Jerkass: She is very tight-fisted, controlling, a hypochondriac, a complainer, racist (disowning one son because he married a Malaysian woman), narrow-minded, and she goes so far as to isolate Astrid after the latter goes through scandals...all because her image is so important.
- My Beloved Smother: Especially to Astrid.
- The Scrooge: She's tight-fisted about money, as evidenced in the book's prologue when she makes Eleanor, Nick, Astrid, Alexandra and Eddie walk nine blocks in the pouring rain because she doesn't want to take a taxi.
- Those Two Guys: With her sister Alix in the film.
Tan Sri Harry Leong
Felicity's husband and father of Henry, Peter, Alexander and Astrid. Director of the Institute of ASEAN affairs.
- Adapted Out: Does not appear in the film.
- Everyone Is Related: His sister is presumably Colin Khoo's mother.
- Hypocrite: His family made their money in Malaysia. Doesn't stop him from disinheriting his son Alexander for marrying a Malaysian woman.
- Jerkass: Bullies Michael Teo and gleefully makes him feel lesser, racist, disowns his son for marrying a Malaysian woman, is controlling of Astrid, cares more about his image rather than attending to his daughter's needs, and displays narcissistic traits.
- Just the First Citizen: Claims to be a mere public servant, though he is said to be a kingmaker in Singapore's government.
- Karma Houdini: Doesn't get any comeuppance for his treatment of Michael, which ruined his marriage to Astrid.
- Kick the Son of a Bitch: Buys the Calthorpe hotel after its manager is racist towards his wife and her family. He also takes care to fire said manager.
- Meddling Parents: A controlling father to his children, particularly to Astrid and Alexander.
- Never My Fault: He and his family never take responsibility for ruining Astrid and Michaels marriage.
- Obnoxious In-Laws: He and his sons treat Michael like a servant.
Astrid Teo, nee Leong
Played By: Gemma Chan
Felicity and Harry's only daughter. Married to Michael Teo, with whom she has a son named Cassian.
- Adaptational Intelligence: She's by no means stupid, but in the book she flunked all of her A-levels and never bothered with college, while in the movie she "graduated top of her class at Oxford."
- Awesome Moment of Crowning: Played with. At the beginning of the film, she buys a $1.2 million pair of earrings that previously belonged to a self-anointed Burmese queen, then hides them from Michael, who is insecure about how much she is able to spend without blinking an eye. After Astrid leaves Michael, she puts on the earrings and calmly strides out of their apartment, newly anointing herself as queen of her own life.
- Cool Big Sis: She is very close with her brother Alexander and enthusiastically embraces his Malaysian wife Salimah, which their parents did not.
- The Fashionista: She's always had a passion for fashion.
- Friend to All Children: In the movie, she spots a little girl at a jewelry shop, trying to get her dismissive mother to pay attention to the bow she tied around her stuffed bunny's neck. Astrid walks right up to the little girl and sweetly compliments her "good eye."
- Identical Grandson: Su Yi remarks that Astrid looks a lot like Su Yi's late mother in her fashion sense, manners, grace, and beauty.
- Nice Girl: Perfectly pleasant to be around and accepts Rachel, she seems to look past peoples' background to appreciate what they offer in their character as this attitude extends to her younger (and disowned by their parents) brother who married a Malay woman and appreciates their loving and healthy marriage. She also is very well-mannered and doesn't like the idea of her fame hogging the spotlight off other people.
- Outnumbered Sibling: She's the only girl in the Leong family.
- Platonic Life-Partners: With Nick.
- Statuesque Stunner: In the films where she's played by the 5'8" Gemma Chan.
- Uptown Girl: She's part of two wealthy and powerful Singaporean Old Money families. Her husband Michael is an ex-Army captain who owns a startup tech company.
- White Sheep: Somehow didn't receive the snobbish, narrow-minded, and controlling attitude displayed by the rest of her family. In fact Eleanor remarks in China Rich Girlfriend that she and Nick get along great because they have "funny ideas" about not wanting to flaunt their wealth (i.e. Astrid wears the same dress to many weddings as to not upstage the bride, as the one time she wore a new one, the press was all over her and the Bride was overlooked).
Played By: Pierre Png
Astrid's husband and Cassian's father. A tech CEO and former Army captain.
- Acquired Situational Narcissism: In the second and third books, he makes a lot of money from Charlie making heavy investments in his company and he takes a massive level in jerkass.
- Adaptational Jerkass: In the books, he fakes having an affair because he wants out of the family. In the film, he really is having an affair.
- Big Bad Duumvirate: With Isabel Wu for Astrids storyline in the third book.
- Foil: To Rachel. Like Rachel, Michael was middle-class, fell in love with a member of the Young family and struggled with being accepted into their circle. Unlike Rachel, Michael allowed his pain to get the better of him, never told Astrid of the problems her relatives gave him and let it ruin his marriage.
- Mistaken for Cheating: Invoked. He wanted to get out of his marriage with Astrid, so he had a relation of his send him salacious texts to make Astrid believe he was cheating on her.
- Obnoxious In-Laws: On the receiving end, as his brothers-in-law and father-in-law treat him like a servant.
- Took a Level in Jerkass: To horrific levels in the second and third books, where he locks his son in a garage for minor gaffes (mostly typical kid stuff) and gaslights Astrid and puts her down for perceived mistakes, he even threatens their au pair with strangulation when she is about to leave with Astrid and Cassian.
Nick's father and Shang Su Yi's only son. Married to Eleanor Sung.
- Adapted Out: Omitted from the film entirely. It isn't too much of a stretch because he wasn't much of a presence in the novel anyways.
- Composite Character: In the film, he buys the Calthorpe hotel instead of Harry Leong.
- The Ghost: In the film.
- I Just Want to Be Normal: Has zero interest in his family's wealth and the social cues that come with it, instead preferring a simple life of fishing and pubs in Sydney.
- Must Have Caffeine: Do not stand between him and his flat white.
- Nice Guy: Very much different from his wife.
- Only Sane Man: Throughout the first book, he tries his hardest to curb Eleanor and her friends' crazed prejudices over Rachel. It doesn't work.
- Outnumbered Sibling: Shang Su Yi's only son.
- Parents as People: He's more level-headed and open-minded than his wife but a flashback in Rich People Problems reveals that he and Eleanor had a massive argument after a family friend and her husband confronted them angrily (alluding to possible infidelities) that scared Nick enough to run away to Colin's grandmother's house where she kept him until Su Yi sent for him.
- Related in the Adaptation: In the books, he enjoys a simple life in Australia away from family drama. In the film, he's stated to still be working for the family in an unknown job overseas.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Left Singapore for Australia because he didn't want to be caught up in the family squabbles. When he receives 30% of the shares in Tyersall Park after Su Yi dies, he gives them all to Nick (who was probably going to get them anyways) because he doesn't really care for the place, but he knows Nick does.
Eleanor Young, nee Sung
Played By: Michelle Yeoh
Philip's wife and Nick's mother.
- Adaptational Personality Change: In the books, she's overprotective and prone to outbursts, and she mostly uses her regular Bible study sessions as a chance to gossip. In the film, she's still overprotective but more of a Proper Lady in terms of demeanor, and she takes Bible study much more seriously.
- Big Entrance: In the second book, she shows up at Nick and Rachel's wedding in a helicopter to tell them that she approves of the match.
- The Heavy: The most active antagonistic force in Rachel and Nick's relationship throughout the first book and film.
- Housewife: In the movie, she studied law at Cambridge but never practiced as a lawyer because she "chose to raise a family"—something she not-too-subtly implies will be expected of Rachel.
- I Want Grandkids: After Nick and Rachel marry, she starts (with the help of Rachel's mother) nagging for grandkids. This is taken to an extreme in Rich People Problems when she and her friends try to trick Rachel into an OB/GYN exam to make sure there aren't fertility issues.
- Meddling Parents: Very controlling of who Nick marries, though she says it's for his own good.
- Not So Different: Like Rachel, she was of a lower class than the Youngs and had to struggle with not being accepted by her potential mother-in-law.
- Parental Marriage Veto: Puts her foot down about Rachel and Nick's relationship because she considers Rachel beneath them and assumes that Rachel has been lying about her father. Subverted in the second book when she learns who Rachel's father is.
- Shipper with an Agenda: Pushes Amanda Ling and Francesca Shaw into trying to regain Nick's affections so Rachel won't have him. Although she is pushing more for Amanda Ling (rightfully so as Amanda is slightly nicer and Francesca turns out to be a terrible Gold Digger who'd be willing to have her grandpa be taken off life support).
- Villain Protagonist: The first book has several chapters of her trying to find dirt on Rachel, other than that, most of the books reveal she is a pretty snobbish, shallow, judgmental, and materialistic character who considers the hurt feelings and betrayals of others as collateral damage.
Alexandra "Alix" Cheng, nee Young
Played By: Selena Tan
Shang Su Yi's youngest daughter. Married to Dr. Malcolm Cheng and mother of Edison (nicknamed Eddie), Cecilia and Alastair.
- Affectionate Nickname: "Alix"
- Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: As far as Eddie is concerned. She hasn't changed her apartment decor or wardrobe since 1991, with a yellowing out bathmat in the restroom and a fashion sense that her sister-in-law Eleanor and Kitty Pong describe as "dowdy".
- Classical Tongue: The only one of the Young siblings to speak fluent Mandarin.
- Disco Dan: She hasn't changed her wardrobe since the 1980s (the books are set in the early to mid 2010s) which contrasts her to the other members of society that are always updating their wardrobes at the speed which a Sickly Neurotic Geek sheds tissue paper.
- Housewife: Invoked; she built her and Malcolm's fortune, but refers to herself as "just a simple housewife".
- Not So Above It All: Compliments Rachel's dress in the film.
- Those Two Guys: With her sister Felicity in the film; they're always in the same scene together.
Edison "Eddie" Cheng
Played By: Ronny Chieng
A private banker, Alexandra and Malcolm's eldest son and older brother of Cecilia and Alastair. Married to Fiona Tung and father of Constantine, Kalliste and Augustine.
- Abusive Parents: Threatens to kill his son for getting his suit dirty.
- Arc Villain: For the first half of Rich People Problems when Su Yi is dying and Eddie is scheming to keep Nick from visiting her so that he (Eddie) can inherit the estate when he thinks Nick and Astrid are disgraced.
- Awful Wedded Life: With Fiona. He loudly berates her and their three children if they ever fail to look or behave according to his standards, and he has kept three mistresses just because he believes that's what men of status in Hong Kong ought to do. She does persuade him to change at the end of the third book.
- Catchphrase: "Fucky fuck!"
- Conspicuous Consumption: Loves flaunting his wealth and doesn't see the point of having money if you can't show that you have money.
- Demoted to Extra: He isn't as prominent in the film as he is in the books, where he has several chapters dealing with his point-of-view.
- Dreadful Musician: His performance of "Wind Beneath My Wings" by Bette Midler for Shang Su Yi's funeral leaves much to be desired.
- Fat Bastard: He's noticeably gaining weight (which he refers to as looking prosperous), and at one point splits his pants.
- In-Series Nickname: Everyone refers to him as "Eddie".
- Jerkass: Cares for nothing but his own status, wealth and appearance.
- Jerkass Has a Point: In the film, he crassly remarks that Nick and Rachel is an unequal partnership that will be looked down upon, pointing out that despite the fact that he married well, the family gave him grief. As it turns out, most of the other wealthy people in the Youngs circle reject Rachel because she is not from their background.
- Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: For China Rich Girlfriend; he sets off the plot because he doesn't want to deal with Bao Shaoyen and passes her off to Eleanor. Eleanor sees that Bao Shaoyen's son resembles Rachel, prompting the search for Rachel's father and Eleanor approving of the match.
- Slave to PR: His top priority at all times is making sure he and his family look as rich as they are.
- Ungrateful Bastard: His parents may have been snobbish but they clearly loved their children and tried their best to make sure they had the right opportunities for education for their careers. Eddie looks down on his father as a "peasant" and his mother for being tight-fisted with money to the point where she has decorated since the early 1990s or updated her wardrobe since Thatcher was in office, never appreciating what he has and was given nor for the family he made with Fiona.
- Villainous Breakdown: After Su Yi's will is read and he doesn't get anything but a pair of cuff links.
Played By: Remy Hii
Alexandra and Malcolm's younger son. At the beginning of the novels, he is dating a movie star named Kitty Pong.
- Adaptational Jerkass: He participates in the "revelries" at Colin's bachelor party in the film, and makes an insulting remark about Rachel that nearly makes Nick punch him.
- The Ditz: It's mentioned he isn't too bright, and barely scraped by at Columbia University.
- Horrible Judge of Character: Had the misfortune to give his heart to Kitty Pong.
- Martial Arts Movie: Finances one of these, called Taipei Tiger 2, in the film.
- Nice Guy: In the books, he is close friends with Colin, his own cousin Nick and their friend Mehmet and shows up to the hospital when Rachel gets sick.
- Pair the Spares: Marries Peik Lin in the epilogue.
- Throw the Dog a Bone: Inherits 10% of the shares in Tyersall Park, something his elder brother Eddie did not receive.
Played By: Chris Pang
Nick's best friend from childhood. Engaged to Araminta Lee.
- Beneath the Mask: On the surface, Colin has a perfect life; he's wealthy, well-connected, pleasant company, and has a pretty and kind-hearted fiancé. However, he also suffers from an anxiety disorder and depression. Also counts as Broken Ace.
- Everyone Is Related: His deceased mother was Harry Leong's sister, meaning that he and Astrid are first cousins. This also makes him distantly related to Nick.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Nick.
- Missing Mom: His mother died when Colin was still a child.
- Raised by Grandparents: Colin's grandmother helped raise him after his mother died.
- Real Men Have Short Hair: His father's attitude toward the man-bun he's sporting in Rich People Problems.
Played By: Sonoya Mizuno
- Adaptational Nice Girl: In the books, Colin hints that Araminta is often skeptical of "new people," and she throws a fit over Astrid wearing an already-worn dress to her wedding. In the movie, she genuinely is as nice as she seems.
- Affectionate Nickname: Called Minty by Colin and Nick.
- Asian Airhead: Portrayed as such in the film, where she's so caught up in preparing for the wedding she fails to notice Rachel getting bullied by her friends.
- Law of Inverse Fertility: Miscarries at least a couple times before she and Colin have a son in the epilogue.
- Pimped-Out Dress: Of all the fabulous dresses in the movie, her wedding dress is the most impressive.
- Significant Wardrobe Shift: Dressed very casually in her first appearance in the book, wearing pajama pants and zero makeup. When we see her again at the beginning of her bachelorette weekend, she's dressed like the absurdly wealthy party girl she is.
- Spoiled Sweet: The heiress to a billion-dollar resort chain, and also cheery and welcoming towards Rachel.
- Vicariously Ambitious: Her parents, Annabel and Peter, are Mainland billionaires whose money is barely one generation old, and they're accordingly excluded from Singapore Old Money society. By carefully adopting this crowd's childrearing traditions, from education to religion, Annabel ensures that Araminta succeeds where she herself failed in breaking through the social barrier, most notably by marrying a Khoo.
Played By: Jimmy O. Yang
An old classmate of Nick and Colin's.
- Evil Parents Want Good Kids: Downplayed, since while he's not evil he is definitely a Jerkass, but after his daughter Gisele is born, even if he is extremely snobbish about it, he seems to want her to live happily and well, with a Harvard education.
- Fat Bastard: The film version is noticeably chunkier than his classmates Nick and Colin, and much more unpleasant.
- The Friend Nobody Likes: Neither Colin nor Nick can stand to be around him, and the only reason why he gets to plan Colin's bachelor party is because his father is a big shareholder in the Khoo business.
- The Hedonist: Loves living to excess.
- Jerkass: He was a bully while growing up, and when he plans Colin's bachelor party, it involves a whole lot of things that he'd like to do, not Colin. This includes dog fights.
- Jerkass Has a Point: His snobbish and perfectionist intentions raising his daughter really alienates his parents and wife saying his parents and Singapore are "too toxic" for Giselle. While it was heartbreaking for Carol to not see her grandchild, granted Bernard's assessment of his parents (father being busy with womanizing and making money and choosing to spend money on Bernard rather than quality time while mom never disciplined him and just spent time at her church) and the society he was raised in (super snobbish, elitist, narrow-minded, exclusive, and spendthrift and entitled with controlling people) isn't far from the truth.
- Lonely Rich Kid: According to Kitty, Bernard chose to separate his daughter from his parents because they were both "toxic", what with his father being too busy making money to spend time with him and throwing money at him while his mother Carol was too busy with her church (and by her own admission, she didn't do much to discipline Bernard and just prayed).
- Magic Plastic Surgery: Subverted hard. In the second book he tries to get plastic surgery to look like Christian Bale after watching The Dark Knight Rises, but the voice-activated machine mishears it and makes him look like Kristen Bell.
Played By: Tan Kheng Hua
Rachel's mother, who raised her as a single parent.
- Absurdly Youthful Mother: She had Rachel when she was about 19 years old and when Bao Gaoling a.k.a. Kao Wei sees her again, he remarks she is still as beautiful as she was when they were young.
- Domestic Abuse: On the receiving end from her ex-husband Zhou Fang Min.
- Good Parents: To Rachel, her worst trait being slightly naggy about Rachel giving her a grandchild, but she has encouraged Rachel's pursuits and left China with Rachel for her infant daughter's safety.
- Mama Bear: A big part of her backstory is that Kerry left her abusive husband's family when a servant disclosed about the in-law's planning to pour acid in one of Rachel's eyes so that Kerry can have a second child due to the loophole in the one child policy allowing another child if the first born was disabled, Kerry with the help of Kao Wei and her family, leaves China with Rachel.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Left China for America when her husband's parents tried to pour acid in Rachel's eye.
- Self-Made Man: Made a respectable career out of real estate to support herself and Rachel, and managed to put Rachel through Stanford.
- Sympathetic Adulterer: Cheated on her husband Zhou Fang Min, who would abuse her. Her affair with her friend Kao Wei resulted in Rachel's conception.
Bao Gaoliang, formerly Kao Wei
A Chinese politician and pharmaceutical billionaire.
- Absurdly Youthful Father: He sired Rachel when he was 17.
- Disappeared Dad: For Rachel. He had no idea that Rachel was his daughter and Kerry did not dare contact him in case Zhou Fang Min found out and killed him.
- Luke, I Am Your Father: He is Rachel's father.
- Walking Spoiler: Rachel's father was thought to be dead. This is not the case.
Gaoling's wife and mother of Carlton.
Gaoliang and Shaoyen's son.
- Accidental Murder: Accidentally killed one of his passengers in a car crash and the other is left paralyzed.
- Cool Car: Makes a living by importing cool cars and selling them to his friends.
- Drives Like Crazy: Likes to race cars down busy streets, which results in at least one fatality.
- Long-Lost Relative: He's Rachel's half-brother.
- Rich Idiot With No Day Job: His father is concerned about him not working and ever being competent enough to run the company, but he sells imported luxury sports cars on the side to his friends.
- Strong Family Resemblance: Bao Shaoyen brings a photo of him while she's in London so the doctors will know what he looks like for plastic surgery, and this kicks off Rachel's plot because Eleanor sees that he closely resembles her (Rachel).
Goh Peik Lin
Played By: Awkwafina
Rachel's best friend from college. She's the daughter of a very wealthy Singaporean real estate developer.
- Adaptational Comic Relief: She's sweet and good-humored in the books, but the film takes her sense of humor Up to Eleven by having Awkwafina play her.
- Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: Doesn't seem too proud of her parents' silly jokes and "Donald Trump's bathroom" taste in home interiors.
- The Fashionista: Loves to go shopping and also helps Rachel to look presentable at Nick's family events.
- Interclass Friendship: She's best friends with middle-class Rachel.
- Non-Idle Rich: In the books, her and her two brothers all hold VP positions with their father's development company.
- Nouveau Riche: Her family's money is very new, thanks to her grandfather founding a successful real estate development company.
- Pair the Spares: She marries Alastair at the end of the third book.
- Spoiled Sweet: She's very rich, but far from being a snob, super generous with her money regarding Rachel and they good-naturedly discuss each other's backgrounds and views on spending.
Kitty Pong, later Tai, then Bing, formerly Pong Li Li
Played By: Fiona Xie
An actress and Alistair Cheng's girlfriend.
- Anonymous Benefactor: Puts up the rest of the money that the Youngs need to save Tyersall Park, just so Colette and her husband can't get it instead.
- Ascended Extra: She's a minor character in the first book, but becomes more and more prominent as the books proceed.
- Bad "Bad Acting": In the film, she's not a very good actress, but she gets parts because Alistair is her boyfriend.
- Didn't Think This Through: She didn't realize the reprecussions of dumping Alastair for Bernard Tai.
- Foil: To Rachel. She's the Gold Digger that most of the Young family thinks Rachel is.
- Gold Digger: Switches to a higher prospect whenever she sees one. In the present events, she goes from Alistair (the younger son of the Cheng family), to Bernard (only heir of his family), to Jack Bing (one of the richest men in China).
- Hidden Depths: Grew up in rural China and was top of her class, but lost her university spot to the son of Party members. She then became a gold digger, because the "right" way didn't work and Kitty refused to spend her life in poverty.
- Make-Out Kids: In the film, she and Alistair exuberantly kiss each other in almost every scene to the point of Running Gag.
- Mama Bear: She is fed up with the lifestyle that Bernard imposes on their toddler daughter and his isolating her and his mom from being a part of her life, that she takes the daughter to Singapore to live with her and build a relationship with Carol Tai.
- Not Evil, Just Misunderstood: Her drive to succeed in high society and her ignorance of its rules often blind her to the impact her actions have on others, but she never does anything specifically to spite another person—except Colette, who everybody agrees deserves it.
- Rich in Dollars, Poor in Sense: Believes she is entitled to a place in upper-crust Hong Kong society because she has married a billionaire, and thinks she can get one by showing off her obscenely large jewelry wherever she goes. Turns out she couldn't be further from the truth: The women she's trying to impress immediately dismiss her as a distasteful poseur. With help from Corinna Ko-Tung, she learns how to tone it down... until she marries Jack Bing and decides she has no further need of approval from these women.
- Right for the Wrong Reasons: In the third book, she provides the last bit of money needed to outbid Jack Bing and allows Nick to save Tyersall Park from being torn down... all because she didn't want Colette to have a present.
- She Really Can Act: In-universe. In the books, Kitty appears to be a decent actress, at least good enough to have some devoted fans. However, when her acting skills are needed for social climbing, Kitty immediately becomes this trope.Corinna Ko-Tung: Cate Blanchett, eat your heart out.
- Sleeping Their Way to the Top: Got one of her first big breaks in the film industry after becoming the director's mistress, then worming her way into Alistair's affections.
- Who Names Their Kid "Dude"?: Her son with Jack Bing is named Harvard.
Played By: Jing Lusi
A lawyer and daughter of Jacqueline Ling, Su Yi's goddaughter.
- Adaptational Villainy: In the film, she gets Francesca's scene where she has a gutted fish dumped in Rachel's quarters.
- Beta Bitch: In the books, she is aligned with Francesca in a bid to split her and Rachel up, but she seems less inclined to get with Nick (unless to get her mother's approval) because she already has a boyfriend from NYC and her own life there.
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: In the film she's the most welcoming of the women at Araminta's bachelorette party (aside from Araminta herself), but instigates the actions against Rachel with the Dead Animal Warning.
- The Dragon: To Eleanor in the film as the person Eleanor pushes to try and make Rachel feel unwelcome in Singapore.
- Karma Houdini: In the film, where she's a lot more malicious, she's never brought to book for the gutted fish message.
- Nepotism: Got her job as general counsel for the Young Family Corporation because her mother is Shan Su Yi's goddaughter.
- Punch-Clock Villain: In the books, Nick gets the feeling that she feels sorry for the endless backstabbing to get his affections.
- Rich Suitor, Poor Suitor: She's the Rich suitor to Rachel's Poor suitor because of her mother's connections to the Young family. Since Francesca is Demoted to Extra in the film, this is played up there.
Played By: Nico Santos
A second cousin of Nick's, a descendant of Su Yis sister-in-law Rosemary.
- Adaptational Job Change: In the books, Oliver works for Christie's as their top Asian art and antiquities expert. In the movie, he appears to have been merged with distant Young family relation Lincoln Tay, who runs a luxury concierge service, from Rich People Problems.
- Almighty Janitor: Oliver's a self-proclaimed poor relation to the Youngs, but he can procure anything they want from golden koi fish to Huanghuali furniture to a rare Cambodian gong. He also does the dirty work on splitting up Alistair and Kitty and throwing the latter at Bernard Tai.
- Camp Gay: Describes himself in the film as the "rainbow sheep" of the family.
- Cool Teacher: To Kitty, in the books. He becomes her chief social advisor after she dispenses with Corinna Ko-Tung.
- Earn Your Happy Ending: At the end of the series, Oliver has overcome near-poverty (by crazy rich Asian standards) and is now rolling in cash, having become an in-demand interior designer whose clients include Middle Eastern royalty.
- Gossipy Hens: Entertains Rachel at Colin and Araminta's wedding by making snarky comments about the arriving guests.
- Impoverished Patrician: We learn in the third book that his family is horribly indebted and has been forced to hock some of their heirlooms for cash. He manages to turn things around by the end.
- Makeover Fairy: Assembles an army of stylists to prepare Rachel for Colin and Araminta's wedding.
- Mr. Exposition: He's got a lot of dirt on the family, which makes him useful for explaining the family relations to Rachel.
- Near Victory Fanfare: In Rich People Problems, once the Bings agree to buy Tyersall Park, which would supply Oliver with the huge commission he needs to enrich his family again, he puts on a recording of "Nessun Dorma" and loudly sings along with it.
Played By: Harry Shum Jr.
An old flame of Astrid's. Married to Isabel and they have two daughters: Chloe and Delphine.
- Awful Wedded Life: With Isabel. He married her because she seemed to be a free spirit, but he didn't realize that she was a mentally unbalanced Manipulative Bitch.
- Demoted to Extra: In the film, he only shows up in The Stinger at Nick and Rachel's engagement party. Time will tell if he plays a larger role in the sequels.
- Didn't See That Coming: He had no idea that Michael would take his newfound wealth so poorly.
- I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Gave Michael a big boost in business so he and Astrid would get back together. It doesn't work when Michael takes a level in jerkass and starts abusing Astrid and Cassian.
- New Old Flame: He was going to be married to Astrid but her parents forced Astrid to break off the match because his family wasn't Old Money. As Michael's personality takes a turn for the worse, Charlie and Astrid rekindle their relationship.
- Nouveau Riche: His family hasn't had their money for as long a time as the Leongs, and that put paid to his prior engagement with Astrid.
Colette Bing, Countess of Palliser.
A very famous socialite and fashion blogger in China, who's also the daughter of a Chinese multi-billionaire. Carlton's on-and-off girlfriend.
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Her true colors come out when she mistakes Rachel's intention to respect Carlton's privacy as keeping her away from him.
- Blue Blood: In the third book, she marries a British-French nobleman, making her a countess.
- Conspicuous Consumption: Spends thousands of dollars on designer clothing, expensive meals, and travel seemingly every day, to the point that Rachel and Nick are exhausted by her generosity and are desperate to skip one of her five-star banquets and grab a burger.
- Contrasting Sequel Main Character: To Astrid: She's the richest, most beautiful, and most fashionable person in her own world, but she loves the spotlight and can't appreciate anything that isn't insanely expensive, whereas Astrid prefers not to be noticed and can find a perfectly nice dress at Zara.
- Control Freak: Always wants everything to be perfect and done just as she exactly wants to.
- Cool Plane: One of her family's three private jets—all of which are named after Starbucks drink sizes—has a koi pond on board.
- Fancy Dinner: Her idea of "keeping it simple" is ordering 10 different entrées and a dessert sprinkled with shavings of 24-carat gold.
- The Fashionista: She is China's top fashion blogger.
- Humiliation Conga:
- Begins when she rejects Richie Yang's proposal, resulting in a mishap that involves Mario Batali's hair catching on fire.
- Then her father cuts off her allowance.
- Then, when she accuses Rachel of trying to keep her and Carlton apart, Rachel delivers a reason-you-suck speech that goes viral, causing Colette to lose a lucrative sponsorship opportunity.
- Things seem to be improving throughout most of Rich People Problems, after she marries a wealthy English lord and is treated like actual royalty in Asia. However, it all goes wrong at the very end, when a freak electrocution puts her into medical rehabilitation.
- Practically Different Generations: She and her stepmother Kitty Pong are close in age, so that makes her newborn brother Harvard more than 20 years apart. This is one of the many reasons there's a rivalry between her and Kitty.
One of the wealthiest men in China, he's Colette's father.
- Arc Villain: He's the antagonist for the second half of Rich People Problems because he wants to buy the land for Tyersall Park and Nick wants to save the house.
- Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: Believes his immense wealth spares him from having to chew with his mouth closed or have clean-smelling feet, which disgusts Colette.
- Fiction 500: He's anywhere from the second to seventh richest man in China, depending on the reports.
- Matchmaker Failure: His efforts to make Colette marry Richie Yang come to nothing.
- Miserable Massage: In Rich People Problems. His masseuse suspects his diet has led to an inflamed gallbladder, which she unfortunately pinpoints exactly.
- Politically Incorrect Villain: Manages to be this in a society of people who hold racist and sexist views and look down on others not like them. The 2nd book has him declare his daughter to be his possession, he clearly regards both his wives as disposable, he states he wants his daughter to marry a man he picked out for her and have lots of grandsons for him. He also internally dismisses the Young sisters because they are so dowdy and declares to Kitty he can always get another wife.
- Wine Is Classy: Subverted. We see him drinking a glass of Chateau Petrus, one of the world's most expensive wines, but he undermines the classiness by putting ice in it.
Played By: Carmen Soo
The daughter of one of Eleanor's friends Nadine Shaw and another young woman vying for Nick's hand.
- Alpha Bitch: In the first book, with her actions against Rachel in effort break up her and Nick and she even drives one girl to tears when she tells this girl "the clock is ticking on your pretty face" and to marry super rich right away.
- Dead Animal Warning: Leaves a gutted fish in Rachel's bed with a message: "Catch this you gold-digging cunt".
- Demoted to Extra: She's much less important in the film than in the book, with only one line in the all-paid shopping spree that's barely heard.
- In the books she becomes more another symbol of the excesses of the wealthy and all their cutthroat ways.
- The Dragon: To Eleanor in the first book as the main person Eleanor uses to win Nick from Rachel and make her unwelcome in Singapore.
- Not So Different: Her actions after her grandfather wakes up from his coma show that she's as much of a Gold Digger as she thinks Rachel is, such as sleeping with a married man who dumps her, then marrying another man for his money.
- Rich Bitch: Not only she's snobbish, but she's also set out to basically make Rachel unwelcome while she's in Singapore and after her miserly grandfather wakes up from his coma and takes back the fortune and starts charging his son and his family for all they spent, Francesca laments to her parents about how they should have pulled the plug before he woke up.
- Socialite: She attends various social events with her mother and they also show up a lot in society magazines.