Every year around this time, we all see and hear the same sort of things: “Here’s your Facebook year in review…”, #NewYearNewMe or “Check out my New Year’s resolutions…” Hell, even I’ve been tempted to post a status about eating right and getting my summer body back — too bad I haven’t had a “summer bod” in a few years.
This year, the conversation I’m tired of having is, “Are you going to be in Charlotte for NYE? What are you going to do?” Prior to a few days ago, my answer was the same as it was last year, “I have no idea.” I’m sure you’ve been there before, too. After every failed NYE, I’ve promised myself that “Next year’s going to be different. I’m going to save up enough money for a magical experience, maybe even travel and it’s going to be epic!”
For my first NYE in the Q.C., my friends and I bought tickets to Label’s Great Gasby-themed shindig. I donned a fur coat and costume jewelry and prepared myself for an amazing night. Our Uber showed up late, took the long route through Uptown and we ended up running in as they started the countdown.
The second? I’d just started seeing someone and even though I was “living single,” I was excited about the possibility of having someone to share a smooch with. Just a few hours before the event, I received the disappointing text, “My ex invited herself, I’m sorry.” Are you kidding me?
While last year wasn’t a complete waste — I was with my boyfriend and great friends — I was still dissatisfied when I ended up spending my entire night on Montford Drive, a familiar hotspot in the Queen all year long. Let’s be honest, we all love Southside Charlotte on a drunken escapade, but a magical NYE? I beg to differ.
Fast forward to 2016, I started asking my boyfriend about what we were going to do for New Year’s Eve months in advance. And once again, nothing was set in stone until the week before. I was dead set on a destination. Either Orlando — where he was going to be for a few days prior — or a casino where we could bring in the new year right — making money. Both ideas were shut down when he realized his favorite football team was playing in yet another “big game.” Who would want to risk missing that? *Rolls eyes*
So what’s the next thing I did? I hit up Google and started weighing our options. The problem was, there were so many factors to take into account. But this time, I had experience and a variety of resources at my fingertips. Don’t risk starting 2017 off on the wrong note, if you’re not sure where you’re spending NYE, do as I did and take the following into account:
1. Ticket price: If you have the extra cash to spend, just make sure you actually like the destination. Some of my favorite venues, such as Ink N Ivy, still have tickets available, but you’re going to spend a pretty penny, especially if you missed out on early bird specials. And keep in mind, there are plenty of cheap and free options too.
2. Transportation: After hearing horror stories of friends racking up Uber charges over $300 and getting stuck at Label for a couple hours due to surge pricing, I knew firsthand how troublesome NYE transportation could be. Designate a sober driver, locate a venue in an area that’s less popular or prepare for the surge.
3. Service: There are plenty of venues Uptown that I love for aesthetic reasons, but that doesn’t mean the service is great. If you’ve had a hard time getting a drink at a certain bar on a regular night, it’ll probably be a nightmare on NYE.
4. Alcohol: Are you going to drink a little or a lot? Only interested in a champagne toast at midnight? Will you leave the party early? After all, you shouldn’t pay a high ticket price for an open bar if you’re not going to take full advantage of it. Don’t forget to read the fine print, your options may be limited.
5. Comfort: Is general admission significantly cheaper but you’ll be standing the whole time?
Comfort is key when you’re in for the long haul, especially for those of you wearing heels. If you don’t like the idea of standing all night, find out whether or not there will be opportunities for seating.
It’s not too late to find somewhere to spend your NYE in Charlotte. Where will you countdown to 2017? Check out our New Year’s Eve Guide