9 New Year’s Eve Traditions from Around the World

Although it may seem like an overly American tradition, many cultures around the world use fireworks to celebrate the new year.

Hannah Cordes

Although it may seem like an overly American tradition, many cultures around the world use fireworks to celebrate the new year.

Hannah Cordes, Sports Editor

Three…two…one…Happy New Year! Many people in the United States celebrate the New Year with fireworks, partying and the dropping the New Year’s Ball, but all over the world there are different traditions people have whine comes to ringing in the new year. Here are just a few traditions you might find interesting:

  • Spain– In Spain, most people eat 12 grapes just as the clock strikes midnight, representing the 12 months that have just passed and completeness of the year. It is said that eating the grapes will bring luck to the eater in the new year.
  • Denmark– People in Denmark save up their old dishes all year long for a special ritual on New Year’s Eve; those who practice this tradition go out and break the dishes on their friends doors, representing brotherhood. One with a lot of broken dishes is said to have many friends. That isn’t all the people of Denmark do, they also jump off of a chair at midnight to symbolize jumping into the new year with good luck.
  • Germany– The Germans try to predict their year by melting lead and then cooling it in water, whatever shape it forms helps predict what their year will be like. For example, when the shape resembles a heart, it symbolizes that you could have luck with love in the year to come.
  • Ecuador– In Ecuador, they burn items from the previous year, such as photos, scarecrows and paper mache to ‘shed’ their past year’s experiences and enjoy a new start.

“Well, I am Ecuadorian so I usually go to Ecuador. In Ecuador, we fill these paper mache called “año viejos” with explosives. Then we throw them into a huge fire on the beach,” sophomore Paula Hernandez said.

  • Columbia– On the day of New Year’s Eve, suitcases are carried around all day in the hopes of a travel-filled year.
  • Ireland– Besides partying all night, the Irish throw bread at their walls in order to rid their homes of evil spirits.
  • Estonia– In Estonia, they seven meals are eaten that day to ensure abundance of crops all year long.
  • Belgium–  The people of Belgium wish their cows a happy new year to bring luck to their livestock.
  • United States of America– Although America may have various famed New Year’s Eve traditions, some are not as well known, such as eating “lucky” black-eyed beans on New Year’s to bring luck into the new year. Whistles and car horns are blown at midnight to start the new year, also people kiss away the new year by sharing a kiss with someone at the strike of midnight.

These are just a few of the traditions from countries around the world, but everyone celebrates differently. Whether you are watching the ball drop or breaking plates on friends’ doors, New Year’s Eve means a  fresh start for everyone all over the world.