New Year’s Eve deserves more than just a few hours of evening revelry. This year, kick the NYE festivities off early with our comprehensive hour-by-hour guide to a full day of New Year’s Eve boozing. These countdown times are based on the Eastern Standard time zone, as New York City is the national epicenter for New Year’s Eve partying. Start brushing up on your international toasting and get ready to drink your way around the world.
Happy New Year, Australia! Start your day of party prep with some Australian or Tasmanian gin (we’re fans of Four Pillars and West Winds) mixed into an easy sipping day drink like a Gin Fizz or a Gin and Tonic.
As you pick out your sparkliest, party-perfect outfit, take a minute to reflect on your questionable fashion choices from the past year—like drop-crotch pants and “naked dresses”—and then take a shot while resolving to never wear them again. It’s the New Year in Indonesia, but since they have a penchant for literally steamrolling bottles of booze there, maybe just stick to whatever alcohol you’ve got lying around and be grateful it hasn’t been flattened.
Break out the Indian whisky (it’s nearly the New Year in Bombay!) and take a sip for every time your friends have changed their plans on you. Or, if there’s no Amrut in sight, pop open some bubbly and make this sparkling cocktail.
Since it’s New Year’s in the Middle East, where people generally abstain from alcohol, take this hour to down some water and load up on fried snacks for lunch to give yourself a good base to soak up the liquor to come. Grab some crispy seafood rangoon or fried pig’s ears.
Na Zdorovie! Break out the vodka—it’s officially next year in Russia. Drink it straight and ice cold (like a true Russian) or mix it into a cocktail. Drink whenever anyone makes a joke about how they won’t do *insert whatever task you’re asking them to do* until next year. Hilarious.
As the New Year rolls into the Mediterranean, whet your appetite with some Greek ouzo, an anise-flavored aperitif. Toast with friends, or drink it by yourself as you contemplate the unstoppable passage of time and the arbitrary marking of another year, while solemnly staring into the distance.
Go out for an early dinner to leave plenty of time for drinking the rest of the night, and enjoy a restaurant’s signature holiday menu and complimentary bubbly. If your dining institution of choice doesn’t serve Champagne, alternatives like prosecco and cava are also acceptable because the New Year has hit most of Europe by now, including Italy, Spain and France. Salute! Salud! Santé!
At this point in the evening, people are making excessive toasts about memories of the last year and the bright, shining future ahead. Raise a pint to our friends across the pond—it’s the New Year in the U.K. and Ireland—and see if you can get through the whole beer before someone begins another speech.
The televised musical performances have officially kicked off, showcasing whatever one-hit-wonder we won’t think about again post-midnight. (Do you remember the South Korean sensation Psy performing at the 2012 Rockin’ New Year’s Eve? No?) Drink every time you notice the artist lip-syncing. It just turned midnight in the middle of the Atlantic ocean, which includes Cape Verde, so by all means, if you have a spirit from Africa, drink up.
With every forced, sponsored “kiss-cam” moment, you’ve become increasingly aware that you have no one to kiss when the clock strikes 12. You don’t care, though, because you have your true love to keep you company throughout the new year: alcohol. Toast the love of your life with a Caipirinha in honor of the New Year reaching Brazil.
For the Argentinian New Year, share a shot of Fernet with your unsuspecting friends who’ve never tasted the tar-colored liquor before, and then revel in their reactions.
It’s almost time! By this point you should be sufficiently full of New Year’s cheer in the form of plenty of bubbly and a wide array of international spirits (if you’ve been playing along). For your last pre-midnight drink, try some rum for the Caribbean New Year, either mixed into a cocktail or sipped straight.
Out of sync and a little too quickly, you all chant “10…9…8…” until, at long last, HAPPY NEW YEAR! Down goes the ball, out comes the confetti and pop goes the bubbly. You bang pots and pans, and cheer loudly at the excitement of a new beginning. Congratulations, you’ve made it another calendar year and you deserve to celebrate with a drink.
At midnight there is one booze and only one booze worthy of the occasion: Champagne, Champagne and more Champagne. Cheers to the New Year and all those resolutions you’re not going to make.