This Is How You Can Be Everyone's Favorite New Year's Eve Guest

Invited to a New Year’s Eve party? Read on for party etiquette tips that will help you have a fun night and score an invitation next year.

Lisa Cericola
New Year's Eve Party Set-up
Stanton Stephens/Getty Images

New Year’s Eve is a time for celebrating and letting loose, but it’s still important to be a thoughtful party guest. From bringing drinks and snacks, to playing music, to making sure guests get home safely, there are plenty of ways to be a good New Year’s Eve party guest. Read on for our best advice.

1. Check the Dress Code
Unlike other holidays, the dress code for New Year’s Eve parties can vary wildly, from costumes to black tie to completely casual. Ask the host what everyone will be wearing and find out whether the party will be held indoors or outside. You won’t want to miss out on a fun backyard bonfire if you’re shivering in a party dress.

2. Buy a Good Bottle of Bubbly
“Good” doesn’t necessarily mean expensive. If your budget is limited, you can find plenty of delicious bottles for $12 to $15. Go to a wine store for expert advice and the most options—grocery stores tend to carry only a few brands. And don’t limit yourself to Champagne. Cava and prosecco are wonderful sparkling wines and are generally less expensive.

3. Help with Snacks
It’s always polite to ask “What can I bring?” and New Year’s Eve is no exception. Even if the host says nothing, it’s nice to bring a simple snack that can be served as-is or enjoyed as a host or hostess gift when the party’s over. Spiced nuts, snack mix, or flavored popcorn are crowd-pleasing, grab and eat ideas that can be easily scaled up or down, depending on the size of the party.

4. Play DJ
If music’s your thing, offer to curate a party playlist through a streaming service, or hook up your phone to the host’s stereo and play DJ for the night—with permission, of course. (It’s also a great way to get conversations going if you don’t know anyone at the party.)

5. Bring Something Silly
As the night goes on, New Year’s Eve parties can get a little crazy and sometimes props help. Raid the dollar store or a party supply store for party hats, horns, sparklers, masks, and confetti. Or bring a deck of tarot cards to predict what the year ahead will bring.

6. Make Sure People Get Home Safely
Whether you’re calling Uber or a cab, help the host make sure everyone gets home safely—including you.

7. Say Thank You
It’s tempting to sleep off your haze on New Year’s Day, but be sure to thank the host for a fun night the next day. You don’t have to send a formal letter in the mail. A quick text message or email only takes a few minutes to send and is always appreciated.