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5 Awesome Ways to Frugally Ring in the New Year

With the end of the year upon us, we have time to enjoy one more party together. And New Year’s Eve can be a lot of fun! However, it can also cost a bit more than you’d think if you aren’t careful. Therefore, I’ve found 5 awesome ways to frugally ring in the New Year that are also a blast!


Most people don’t even think about state run museums, or private ones for that matter, when it comes to how to ring in the New Year. However, in our city, the NC Museum of Natural Sciences and the NC Museum of History have their own celebrations during the day on New Year’s Eve. These museums have crafts and events all throughout the day for families to participate in, for NO COST.

They also vendors outside the museums that are either performing dances or music. Some of these vendors are specifically geared towards families by setting up arts and craft tables outside to partake in. This has been a huge boon to my family as it has something for all of us to enjoy while celebrating together. So, if you haven’t checked out these options around your town or city, I highly recommend it!


Even if you haven’t been able to find cool free New Year’s Eve events at museums in your area, most downtowns have a celebration at night. Our city is no different and it’s also completely FREE to enjoy. Most of it, at least. There are vendors set up with food and drinks, crafts, and some games and rides. While a lot of these do charge, you are welcome to walk around with your own food and drinks, which helps make this event even more frugal. My favorite part of the event is when they ring in the New Year early by dropping the acorn (our version of the glittery ball), so we can all get home before the kids fall asleep.

Once they finish the kids/families version of the New Year’s Eve party, they reset it for the adults. This is when most families leave and you can find more adult centered activities, including live bands and alcohol. We simply love this idea because we don’t have to do much on our end, other than show up.


Another way we’ve rung in the New Year is via a house party. Some friends have created a New Year’s Eve sleepover party for close friends and their kids. I thought this was a great idea because it was fun for kids and adults. There were video games and party games for the kids to play, as well as some kid friendly foods and snacks. While the kids partook in those activities and foods, the adults got to chat and catch up over some themed adult beverages and more palate teasing foods.

The hosts provided sparklers, hats, and noisemakers for the kids. Which we all loved because it meant that we all got to have fun as a family. Plus, we got the bonus of showing off our cool holiday pajamas and spending the night together. This idea is a blast, if you have the room and desire to host it.


Along a similar vein, one of my favorite New Year’s has been spent with friends at their house. Similar to the family house party, but adults only. And to make it more cost effective, everybody signed up to bring a dish and and adult beverage of some sort.

One of my favorite things about potluck parties is that you just never know what people are going to bring. Which means, we usually get introduced to some new foods and drinks to try. I love trying new things, so this was a huge bonus for me!

As an added bonus, at his particular party, each couple/single had to bring one of their favorite board games. This was a really cool addition because board games tell you a lot about a person and their likes. Just when you think you know somebody, you get to learn even more about them, while having a party at the same time. Huge bonus!


For the slightly less frugal option to ring in the New Year right, there are quite a few options that still won’t break the bank. There are quite a few places that have started offering all-inclusive ring in the New Year parties. These are awesome choices to consider since the entrance ticket usually includes:

  • food
  • non-alcoholic beverages
  • alcoholic beverages (some have a limit on how many and some are unlimited)
  • live music
  • dancing
  • coat check
  • champagne toast at midnight

Not only are these events indoors, where it is warm, but there are bathrooms at your disposal. For me, personally, that’s a huge plus. And I don’t have to worry about spending any more money after I’ve purchased my all-inclusive entrance ticket. Therefore, it might be worth it to look around your city to see who might be offering this option on New Year’s Eve.

frugally ring in the new year summary

Whether you have kids or not, there are a few really good options to frugally ring in the New Year right. Some of my favorite finds for families include:

  1. State Museums
  2. Family Celebrations
  3. House Party

If you’re a single or a couple, or have a babysitter for the night, then these 2 options are good considerations:

  1. Potluck Party
  2. All-Inclusive Adult Party

Either way, as long as you’re with family and/or friends to ring in the New Year, and haven’t killed your wallet in the process, then you’re doing it right. So here’s to ringing in the New Year right without breaking the bank!

What are some of the best ways you have found to ring in the New Year without breaking the bank?