2019 is just right around the bend and every country has New Year traditions and customs. Countries celebrate the coming year differently. Find out which ones are similar to yours and which ones are totally new.

Unique New Year Traditions from Around the World

Scotland

The Scots celebrate Hogmanay or New Year’s Eve day to the singing of the “Auld Lang Syne”. However, it’s not the song that’s really unique to Scots. They have the tradition of “first foot” which means the first visitor to cross over the threshold into the house after midnight. “First footers” are often treated like mini-celebrities for the night and are said to have a great year full of luck.

Philippines

This archipelagic country is chock full of traditions for the New Year from European influences to Asian. In particular, the Chinese. They have traditions such as the 12 round fruits to be served at New Year’s Eve to wearing red clothing and lighting fireworks. However, there’s one tradition that is very unique. In some places in the Philippines, people wait with bated breath for midnight. One the clock strikes 12, the household jumps up and down. If you think it’s for joy, maybe you’re half right. However, they jump for luck for the New Year, for more blessings and most importantly for more height or to get taller in the next year.

Japan

If making noise is something commonplace around the world as the New Year Countdown to 2019 comes. Japan makes noise in a different way for a different reason. All over the country, shrines and temples ring chimes up to 108 times. They believe that the sound helps man avoid the 108 earthly temptations.

Russia

Everything seems hardcore in Russia. If the rest of the world writes down their resolutions and wishes, Russians write on pieces of paper their wishes and burn them. The ashes are then mixed with wine and drunk on the New Year with the promise that it will come true.

Italy

Following the steps of Russia is Italy. They favor the new year and out with the old year by literally getting rid of old things from crockery to furniture by (carefully) tossing them out of the window. It also helps that they believe leaving the windows and doors open will allow good spirits in while the cool January air wafts evil spirits into the night.

Living the New Year Traditions

There are more unique new year customs around the world and the best way to enjoy them is to experience them.  If you’ve got only one chance to travel in a year, why not enjoy the New Year in a new country? Treat yourself to a holiday abroad.

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