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Budget New Year’s Eve Ideas

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New Year’s Eve always promises to be the best night of the year IF you have the budget to spend on it… Here are some great alternatives to spending all of your hard-earned cash.

I’m going to start out by saying that nine out of ten times the hype of New Year’s Eve is not what it promises to be. Every year around Christmas time I start to imagine all of the exciting things that COULD happen. Yet none of them ever happen.

However – with the following ideas you can make sure that you have a memorable New Year’s without entering the New Year broke.

Here are seven alternatives that hit all the right marks:

  • Drinks Only

If you’re looking to save money and sanity this New Year’s but still want to be a part of a group of people celebrating into the New Year, do a little compromise. Instead of eating out and then going out for drinks, cook with friends and/or family at home and then go out for a drink afterwards. This saves you from going over-board with the spending. Make sure you book a table or buy tickets a few weeks in advance!

  • A Creative New Year

Whether you think you are creative or not, being creative is one of the greatest treats you can give your heart and soul. This next idea is a great idea to do with some friends:

  • Tape or Prestick some paper to the wall or on a large board.
  • Using khokis or paint and let your creative juices flow! Draw pictures, write messages or make goals with your friends for the New Year.
  • Make sure you cover the entire page – when you’re done choose a section you like the most, cut it out to fit a frame and frame it. You can buy a frame or even make one out of cardboard.

This way, you’ll always remember your 2016 New Year’s party as a fun, creative one and not an expensive one!

  • Have a Treasure Hunt

This one’s for the couples and involves a little more effort.

  • Split the couples up and create two teams. It might make the hunt easier if one couple volunteers to manage the hunt but this isn’t essential.
  • Have each couple partaking in the hunt create one leg of the hunt so that the length of the clues is the same for each team. Each member of that couple can then act as a guide and mediator to their team when they get to that leg of the race – but no cheating allowed! Alternatively, one couple can also offer to create the whole hunt and mediate it instead of taking part in it.
  • Make sure the hunt is well timed so that all couples find each other before the clock strikes twelve!
  • Your treasure? A kiss from your love of course!
  • A Good, Old-Fashioned Pool Party

New Year’s Eve in summer has got to be one of the biggest advantages of living in South Africa. If you don’t have a pool, organise to use someone’s house that has one – this is crucial. The best part with this one is that everyone not only brings their own drinks but their own food as well! In doing this, everyone can braai, fry, bake or boil whatever they want to eat and the host isn’t caught catering to everyone. Make sure that everyone knows what appliances are available (or even better, they can prepare it at home!) and to buy paper plates and cups for an easier clean up. Voilà!

  • Beach Picnic

This one is too easy! If you live at the beach, plan it and do it properly. Make sure you find a good spot during the week before the ‘big’ night that won’t get too crowded. Then simply invite a bunch of friends, pack blankets and snacks and enjoy a sandy New Year’s Eve. Best part is you’ll probably witness some fireworks too.

  • Game’s Night

Get together with your family, friends and your favourite board games. Spend the night rolling dice and shouting UNO! This literally costs nothing, however, you can always buy small prizes for the winners to give throughout the night.

  • Backyard Camping

If you’ve come up empty handed in the hopes of a cheap weekend away, why not do it at home? Whether it’s a large group or just you and your S/O (significant other). Gather all the sheets, blankets, pillows and pegs you can find and create a backyard fort/tent. This will give you a fun activity to do on the day of New Year’s eve and will create a great space to lounge about and socialise in on the evening of. If you want to make it a bit easier, you can use an actual tent. If you don’t have a garden – do it in your lounge or bedroom!

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Remember to do what you want to do, with whom you want to do it. Too often we are caught at parties, gatherings or braai’s with people we have just met. Doing the opposite of what we had imagined or initially wanted to do. Make sure you plan your evening so that you spend it with those you care most about, that’s what it’s truly all about in the end.

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