How to grab an affordable last-minute New Year’s Eve break

New Year’s Eve is the time to celebrate the new year with friends and family. It’s good fun, but it can get expensive, especially if you’re planning to have a night out in any of the UK’s big cities. You may think that going away for the holiday may be an expensive pipe dream, particularly if you haven’t booked your trip months in advance.

Well, it may not be as pricey as you thought. In fact, if you get a good deal on flights and hotels in a European city that is less expensive than London or Edinburgh, it’s possible that you may end up spending a similar amount or even less than you would normally. Imagine!

Here are some of our recommendations for destinations this year, and a few tips on how to save money. As always, if you book these New Years Eve deals through Quidco’s partnered retailers, you could earn cashback on your travels and accomodation, making the start of 2019 even sweeter.

Cheap places to go for New Year's

There’s no denying that the excitement of London’s NYE fireworks and the pure history behind Edinburgh’s Hogmanay are wonderful ways to welcome the new year. However, with skyrocketing accommodation prices and expensive food and drink, it can cost a lot to celebrate in these cities. Why not do something different this year and try out some of these top destinations that won’t leave you broke in 2019?

Lisbon

Over the last few years, Portugal’s capital has been an up and comer for anything from romantic city breaks to stag and hen dos. As more people have visited the city, tales of its grand architecture, delicious food and pumping nightlife have made it a must-visit. 

New Year’s Eve is something special in Lisbon. Every year, the town hall hosts a show in the Plaza de Terreiro do Paço. There’s a concert with a line-up of Portugal’s best musical talent — and it’s free entry to everyone! The celebrations go into the early hours of the morning.

Don’t fancy partying in the streets? There’re lots of other options open to you. Lisbon is making a name for itself as having one of the best nightlifes in Europe. If you’re looking for a big night, head to Convento do Beato. This convent was built in the 1500s and still retains its stunning architecture. For New Year’s Eve, it transforms into a club night, with top DJs and pumping beats. If you want to splash out, you can have the preceding dinner for roughly €110 (including three complimentary drinks) or if you just go for the party, it’ll cost around €32 — plus three free drinks!

What’s more, Lisbon is still pretty affordable. According to the cost of living database Numbeo, a meal for two in a mid-range restaurant will cost you only €35, while half a litre of beer is a cheap and cheerful €2. Compare this to London, where a meal for two is (at least) £50 and a pint costs double that of Lisbon at £5.

For affordable last-minute flights and hotels, take a look at Skyscanner. At the time of writing, you can get return flights from some UK cities for under £100, and further great deals on hotels.

Lisbon NYE

Prague

In the Czech capital everyone knows how to party, and New Year’s Eve is no exception. The main fireworks display takes place on the January 1st. However, there are still more than enough things to do the night before. Take to the streets to party and let off fireworks, with the Old Town Square and Charles Bridge being the party hotspots.

If you’re feeling a little more flush, you can take a cruise through the Vltava river and watch the pyrotechnics from the safety of a luxury ship. Tickets for these cruises are going thick and fast, however, so if you’re planning on going you should probably scoop these up sooner rather than later.

Again, partying in Prague for the new year means cheaper drinking and eating than London. Some say that beer is cheaper than bottled water in Prague. Some say that’s nonsense. Whatever the truth is, booze is still a lot cheaper than in the UK, so you can save some money when it comes to drinking the New Year in.

For last-minute New Year’s Eve package deals, head to Expedia, where you can get flights and accommodation all in one neat price. Remember to follow the links to Expedia through Quidco, so you can earn cashback.

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Bratislava

Bratislava is definitely off the beaten track when it comes to NYE destinations. However, that can be great when it comes to saving money at the end of the year celebrations. This one’s perfect for family parties. The Slovakian capital is a gorgeous Medieval city steeped in history, and its New Year celebrations are backed by centuries of tradition. 

The festivities start early on the 31st and go on until midnight, so it’s a great city to welcome the new year without the kids having to stay up too late. Find yourself in the centre of the city and you won’t be able to move for traditional dances and shows.

Bratislava is also super affordable! With a three-course meal for two people at mid-range restaurant costing only roughly €30 and beers costing less than €2, there’s lots of fun to be had on a budget. For cheap package deals, take a look at lastminute.com, where you can find flights and hotel all-in-ones for under £30! Add a bit of cashback to that, and you’re looking at a great deal.

How to save money on New Year's Eve break

Check out these tips and trick to help you save money on a New Year’s Eve break.

Be open-minded

If you really want to go away for cheap this New Year’s Eve, try keeping your options open. Keep scanning the web for great deals on both flights and hotels. You may find a great price of on travel and accommodation for somewhere you never would have thought to go. But try it. It’s New Year’s Eve, after all, so it’s likely to be lots of fun.

Additionally, not everything has to come in a package. Of course, you can buy flights and hotels separately. But if you’re really savvy, you may be able to get cheaper travel by getting your outbound and return flight tickets from two different airlines. For example, you could fly out with easyJet and return with Thomas Cook.

NYE flights

Research your hotel

Make sure you know all there is to know about a hotel before you book it. Although some accommodation might seem like the perfect place to stay at a nice low cost, check that it’s reasonably close to the centre. There’s no point getting a great price on a hotel if you then have to spend all your budget getting to and from where the celebrations are happening.

Be brave and leave it to the last minute

It’s an age old debate. What’s cheaper? Booking your holiday months in advance or waiting to the last minute. If you’re lucky, you can snap up the very final deals, where flight companies and hotels are trying to get rid of remaining seats and rooms. Naturally, you’ll have to be flexible as to where you’re going to celebrate. However, if you’re open-minded about where you want to spend New Year, then this could be the option for you. Think of it as an adventure. There’s something exciting about not knowing where you’re going to go.

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