New Year’s Eve in New York City

Times Square, New York City. Photo by Jorge Láscar via Wikimedia Commons.

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I’m usually doing something ridiculous or awesome in some strange corner of the world for New Year’s Eve, but when I was a kid, I remember staying home with my parents, watching TV and trying to stay awake until midnight to watch the iconic New Year’s Even Ball drop in Times Square. This has to be the most iconic New Years Eve event in the world – it’s been going on for over 100 years. The first ball was lowered in 1907, and it continues to be a NYE staple. But is it really that cool? Staying home and watching the ball drop certainly isn’t my kind of party, but I’m sure some folks are into it – especially if you have kids of your own now. It’s a nice family tradition, and it’s moved into the 21st century with the addition of an official live webcast so you can watch the ball drop on your laptop, and if you’re into mobile tech, they’ve also got an official app for iPod and Android devices.

NYE 2008: Hats, scarves, and other corporately branded gifts are passed out to revelers. Photo by Phier, via Wikimedia Commons.

Sure, it’s easy to watch the ball drop on your TV, computer or mobile phone, but if you want to really experience New Year’s Eve in Times Square, you’ve got to get yourself off the couch and head to New York! Your first step should be to check out cheap flights to USAdestinations – good deals to New York should be easy to find. New Years in New York is a huge event, so you’ll want to do some planning ahead. Every year, an estimated one million people swarm Times Square for the event, so if you plan on seeing it all go down in person, you should be pretty comfortable in crowds. It’s going to be crowded, hectic, cold, and yeah, probably a pretty awesome experience. ABC’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve has just announces performances by Taylor Swift, Carly Rae Jepsen, Neon Trees and Psy, all live from Times Square! So be ready to get Gangam Style in the Square!

If you want to get a good view of all the action, you’ll have to get there pretty early – I recommend making your way to Times Square before sunset. The main soundstage is at the intersection of Broadway and Seventh Avenue and there are video screens on the One Times Square building as well as on Broadway at 50th, 52nd, 54th, and 58th Streets.

It’s going to be a good party, but maybe not the type of party you’re expecting. Many people don’t know that you’re not allowed to drink alcohol on the streets of New York. Police will be enforcing the no booze rules and confiscating any alcohol they come across. So if you’re going to bring a flask, be sure to be extra sly about it. But before you start filling your Camel Back with booze, here’s a fun little fact for you: There will be no Porto Potties in Times Square during the celebration. That’s right – nowhere to pee. The bars and restaurants in the area have bathrooms, no doubt, but whether or not they will be open for public use is a different story.

Times Square, littered with confetti and trash after a New Year’s Eve Celebration. Photo by Maria Azzurra Mugnai via Wikimedia Commons.

Can’t make it to New York, but still want to be a part of the party? Every year people from all over the world write their New Year’s wishes on pieces confetti that are dropped on Times Square during New Year’s Eve. If you’re in New York, you can head to the New Year’s Eve Wishing Wall in the Times Square Museum and Visitor’s Center, where you can post your wish on the wall to later be collected and used as confetti. But if you can’t make it to the city, just log on to the Virtual Wishing Wall where you can submit your wish to be printed out and used as official New Year’s Eve Confetti! Kinda cool, I think.

If you do make it to Times Square for New Year’s Eve, drop us a line and let us know how it was! If you’re staying a while, you might consider renting New York City Apartments, and if you’re flying in check out the best airfare offers here.

Justin Jones

About Justin Jones

Justin Jones is the Founder and Editor in Chief of World Travel Buzz. He thrives on adventure and loves connecting with fellow travelers, contemporary misfits, and kindred creative spirits.