Written by: J. Vigotsky
New Year’s Eve is the second-busiest bar night of the year. So with December 31st right around the corner, bars and restaurants should be gearing up for what can be a very profitable night. But planning a New Year’s Eve party is different from celebrating other popular holidays. This post will explore why that is and also share a few helpful tips for how to throw a New Year’s Eve Party.
Make Your Party an Event
While popular bar nights like St. Patrick’s Day and Thanksgiving Eve are marked by bar hopping, New Year’s Eve is generally enjoyed in a single venue. The whole day and night lead up to a singular moment when the ball drops. As a result, people prefer to just stay in one place while waiting. It’s in your best interest to provide food, drinks, and whatever entertainment people might need. That might be music, comedy, games, or something else entirely. If you know your customer base well, you should be aware of what entertainment they’d enjoy on New Year’s Eve.
Have Plenty of Champagne
Even if you don’t usually stock your bar with champagne, it’s important to make an exception for New Year’s Eve. People have been ringing in the New Year with champagne since the 1800s. When the clock strikes midnight, they expect to make a toast to the New Year. So it’s on you to help make sure they can.
Get the Word Out
Perhaps the most important part of throwing a New Year’s Eve party is ensuring people know about it. Starting time, ending time, dress code, and what’s included with the entry fee are all important to note. Will your party be an open bar? Maybe just one free drink ticket and a buffet is included? These are all things to consider when planning your party and getting the word out.
Safe Rides Home
Even in a world where Uber and Lyft have done their best to keep rides affordable, New Year’s Eve traffic can lead to surge pricing. Consider hiring driver(s) for the night who can help customers get home safely without breaking the bank. This will result in goodwill from customers and improve the chances that they return to your bar or restaurant in the future.
New Year Discounts
Once the ball drops and the calendar turns to a new year, it’s common for customers to head home. If you want to keep them around, offer special drink discounts in honor of the New Year. Another idea is to hold a 50/50 raffle whose drawing takes place at 12:30 or 1:00 AM.
All Hands on Deck
If you’re expecting a large crowd of people, be sure to have enough staff members so that every patron can be accommodated. New Year’s Eve is a long night that can get quite hectic, so you want to be prepared for anything. If you’re unsure of how many staff members should be working, keep in mind that it’s better to have one too many workers than one too few.
Above all, remember that patrons want to have fun. So despite the heightened stress of the night, it’s important for you and your staff to maintain a positive environment. Always smile and do whatever you need to ensure customers are enjoying themselves.