NEW YEARS IN NEW YORK: IS IT WORTH IT?
Nothing ticks all the ‘American’ boxes more, than ringing in the New Year in one of the most famous cities in the world, New York. It’s a movie moment characterised by trying to beat the clock for a kiss, wild parties, and of course, Times Square. However, is spending your New Years Eve in New York all it’s cracked up to be?
Well, we tried it on for size and found there were fors and againsts to spending NYE in New York city. If you decide to brave it, perhaps you can learn from our (and others') mistakes and head in with a fool proof game plan.
Make it your own
More often than not, NYE is a concept fueled with optimism, hope and hype. These ideals often come crashing down when you realise that the whole evening can be a bit of a disappointment. You’d think that we’d learn but time and time again we make plans with far too much riding on it. New York is a big place offering endless options for celebrating. Don’t focus on doing what you think you should be doing, instead, do what you want.
As a couple traveling, nightclubbing with sweaty masses desperate for a midnight kiss just wasn’t our thing. We decided a nice three course dinner followed by drinks at the bar was more appealing. Our amazing evening of delicious food and great conversation over drinks, was within our budget, and allowed us to wear our travel clothes. We also avoided the need to hail a taxi in standstill traffic.
Pick something you want to do and go from there. If you’re stuck for suggestions then consider the following:
-A nice dinner at a renowned restaurant
-Tickets to a nightclub with drinks included
-Heading to a smaller bar that is open to anyone all evening
-A live music show
Times Square uncovered
If you insist on heading to Times Square then go fully prepared. Most tourists believe they can wander along to Times Square and join in the fun at midnight. What you don’t know is that nearly 1 million other people will be there, all wanting to experience the ball dropping ...and they’ll have been there waiting, since noon.
So, the first piece of advice is obvious, arrive early. The police actually shuts the Times Square vicinity down, once each area is at capacity, so getting there early is paramount. Once you’re there, don't expect hot dogs stands or food stalls - there are none. There are no public toilets, and you will be standing for 9 hours in NYC during winter.
Make sure you take plenty of snacks to keep you nourished throughout the whole ordeal. Bring water but keep in mind that if you want to go to the toilet you could be in a pickle. People have been known to pee in public or invest in special urination aids.
Wear comfortable shoes and warm clothes. Anything bigger than a pocket size purse won’t be allowed in the area, so leave your backpack at home and utilize your pockets for storing items. It goes without saying, leave anything valuable at home.
The best hack for braving Times Square on NYE is to book a table at a restaurant (well in advance) as close to the ball as possible. Anyone in the know will book for around 10pm for just under two hours. Just before it hits 12, leave and head back through the crowd in order to glimpse the ball at midnight. Alternatively, most restaurants will allow you to step out around midnight to see it drop, after all that is why you’re there.
Check out the following for ball drop views:
-The View (above the Marriott)
-Bubba Gump Shrimp
-Renaissance New York
-DoubleTree Guest Suites
Keep in mind you’ll be paying an extraordinary price to witness this magic, so be warned.
Two tickets please!
New Years Eve is one of the biggest events on New York’s social calendar which also means plenty of entertainment options for you. Whether you want to elbow your way to the bar and dance to the hottest DJs, or sit back and enjoy live music and a sit down dinner, there will be an option for you.
The best part of these events is that they’ll usually include an open bar and finger food, not to mention hours of music before the countdown.
If you reach to the really deep crevices of your pockets, the options for entertainment will surpass your wildest expectations. Everything from aerialists to world class dining options will be yours for the picking.
If you’re willing to head to Brooklyn then prepare for a wild night all the coolest hipsters will be ringing in the New Year there.
Over the bridge
It’s no secret these days, that Brooklyn almost surpasses Manhattan in coolness. Brooklyn definitely delivers when it comes to NYE, and true to form, it offers everything from family friendly to wild parties.
If you’re feeling brave then consider hitting up one of the Brooklyn’s big events such as the famous Bang On! There will also be many similar events on offer - make sure you troll the internet for suggestions.
If you’re thinking of something a little different then you could always take part in the NYE bike ride which leaves Brooklyn and takes you to Central Park. You’ll not only witness some amazing sights but you’ll start the year feeling fit and healthy. The NYE crowds in Brooklyn will be a lot kinder to you (one of the best reasons to make this choice) and you’ll be surrounded by locals rather than overwhelmed by tourists.
So there you have it, a few suggestions to help make your New Years in New York everything you’d hoped for. Whether you want to brave the crowds of Times Square or relax with others over a nice meal and drinks, the evening will be one to remember.
Let us know, what your favourite New Years Celebration ever, has been ....... we'd love to hear from you.