New Year’s Eve countdown

Written by    Last updated: June 6, 2006

Make sure you see the New Year in without a hitch with our essential New Year’s Eve checklist…

One month beforehand

  • Decide on a venue and theme (if you want one) for your party.
  • Compose your guest list.
  • Plan the menu if you’re making a dinner party.
  • Send out your invitations.
  • Check out our table decoration perfect planner and buy decorations and favours.
  • Make arrangements for any items you’ll need to hire.
  • Hire a DJ or band if you’d like one.

One to two weeks beforehand

  • Finalise your guest count and chase up those who haven’t responded.
  • Compile your shopping list and buy non-perishable items — don’t forget Champagne as this is New Year’s Eve after all.
  • Check that you’ve got corkscrews and cameras and camcorders filled charged and full of film or tape.
  • Order any special flowers, meats, seafood, or other ingredients you’ll need.
  • Make as much food as possible in advance and freeze it.
  • Make mix tapes or CDs.

Two to three days beforehand

  • For house parties, clean the house and start to put up decorations.
  • Do your food shopping, checking that you have everything you need for recipes and snacks.

One day beforehand

  • Shop for last-minute items.
  • Make sure all the decorations are up.
  • If possible, arrange and set your table(s) and serving areas.
  • Prepare as many recipes and ingredients as possible – chop vegetables you’ll cook as part of a recipe — and thaw frozen items.

On the day

  • Prepare your foods and wash up as you go along.
  • Make sure all foods and beverages to be served cold are well chilled.
  • Put all the finishing touches on the meal and tables.
  • Put out binbags.
  • Set out snacks and nibbles, making sure perishable snacks are covered up until the last minute.
  • Get your music system ready and lined up with suitable music.
  • Switch on the radio or TV at two minutes to midnight so that everyone can hear Big Ben bring in the New Year!

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