Not every year is a good year. To make sure it will be some New Year’s traditions have been created a long time all over the world. Some of them are so funny that even if they did not bring you good luck, at least you will enter the new year with a good laugh. However, what may appear ridiculous to you can be a serious matter elsewhere. Therefore, if you plan to follow a tradition do it right. If you are superstitious or curious you may probably know some of those traditions already. And, if you don’t know or remember all of them, at least you should learn about the seven basic ones. 


  1. Traditional toast

New Year's eve

On New Year’s Eve, most tables are filled with champagne glasses. This french drink has turned – over the last two decades – into THE New Year’s drink. However, this has not always been the case. If sharing a toast of good wishes is the tradition, the choice of champagne not so much. It is actually recommended to fill your cup with a traditional local drink. For example, your English grandparents might prefer the special cider-like punch Wassail. If you are in Scotland then go for a hot pin, or mulled wine if you are among Dutch people. 


  1. New Years’ food

Grapes tradition

Luck can come from many different things depending on your culture. Sometimes it’s symbols, a touch, a prayer, and on New Year’s Eve it can be food. Most New Year’s traditions about food imply eating right as the clock strikes 12. One of the most famous traditions is the Spanish 12 grapes. They must be eaten one after one following each ring of the clock. If you manage to do it without gagging or choking on one, then you’d be entering a whole year of luck. If you are not fond of grapes, you may be happy to learn that there are some traditions in a few other cultures requiring only to eat ring-shaped food. In this category, there are enough choices to please everyone’s taste. 


  1. Throw water or sugar

throw water sugar

Many cultures believe in spirits. Some are good and others are demons. In Puerto Rico, no evil spirits are welcome to enter the new year with you. To make sure of that you should dump a bucket of water out of the window. If you have a garden it could even be great for your plants but this tradition is quite complicated when you live in an apartment. It may actually do you more harm than good. Maybe that’s probably why Puerto Ricans have an alternative. If you can’t drive away bad luck then invite good luck into your home by sprinkling some sugar outside your house. 


  1. Make the jump

jump into 2021

If you are not suffering from acrophobia (fear of height) this is one of those New Year’s traditions made for you. It is very simple. All you need is a chair. Indeed, a Danish tradition consists of standing on a chair and “leap” into the new year at midnight. It is believed to bring good luck and banish bad spirits. This is an easy tradition to be a little luckier next year. The only way it could go bad is if you manage somehow to break the chair or fall down after the jump. Therefore a good idea would be to take off your shoes and make sure the floor is not slippery. 


  1. Let the New Year in

let new year in

The Philippines is blessed with nice weather even during the western winter season. This is probably why the following New Year’s tradition has been invented there and not in Canada for instance. It’s far better to open your window when it feels like 25°C minimum outside than – 15°C ! However, doctors still advise bringing some fresh air to your home about 10 min minimum each day. This could actually quite make sense on New Year’s eve because how are you supposed to let the old year out and the new year in with everything closed?! Put your coat and scarf on and let it come.  


  1. The kiss

the kiss

This is a classic tradition. At midnight, you do the countdown loudly alltogether, share toasts and wishes, and kiss your loved ones when the clock hits 12. You can choose between hugs, cheek kisses, and lip kisses depending on how close you are to the people around you. They are two sayings behind the traditional kisses. Some people argue that the first person to touch, hug, and kiss on New Year will impact your fate for the year. Other people stand on a more romantic side believing that the person you kiss is the one you hope to be kissing the whole year. So, when the countdown approaches be careful and move to the right spot. 


  1. New Years’ resolutions

New Year's resolutions

Probably the most popular New Year’s tradition: the resolutions for the upcoming year. Almost everyone does it or tries to. However, it is well-known now that setting up goals is not the hardest part. Generally, people are pretty good at it but less good at actually achieving them. This is due to many different reasons. Sometimes, people forget them, sometimes they were not realistic and sometimes they try, they start, but then it’s harder than they think, and give up. It has already happened to everyone, especially when those resolutions are about eating healthier, or going to the gym regularly, or quitting a bad habit. One trick that could work to stick to your resolutions is to write them down somewhere you can see them every day. 



Those New Year’s traditions are the most famous ones, but they are only a fragment of the long list of existing traditions. They are specific to New Year’s Eve and about the best way to enter the new year. Everyone agrees that you should wish a happy new year to the people around you: friends, colleagues, family, acquaintances,…when you met them the first time. However, the debate remains on when is it too late to wish it?

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