New Years in College: How to Stay Safe

It’s winter break and a new year? There’s lots to celebrate on New Year’s Eve during college, amirite? Whether you’re celebrating near home with your high school friends, reuniting with your college pals somewhere cool, or spending a chill night around town, there are a few things to be aware of during your celebrations to keep you and your friends safe!

Drunk Driving

Even if you’re not drinking, drunk driving on New Year’s Eve is always something to consider. New Years is the second most fatal day of the year for drunk driving (behind Thanksgiving), so if you’re driving, be extra careful and avoid driving at peak times (after midnight and when the bars close in your city).

If you are drinking,  don’t drive! There are many other alternatives that will ensure you have a fun, safe night. Depending on your plans, take public transportation, designate a driver, take a cab or Uber, stay overnight, get a hotel room – really whatever it is that will keep you off the roads. If you’re attending a house party, make sure to bring an overnight bag in case you overindulge, or have a cab number or the AAA Safe Ride Program programmed in your phone. A couple extra bucks for a cab is way cheaper than a DUI or your life.

If you’re not driving and depending on someone else, take caution and trust your gut. If you think they are too drunk to drive, stay put. You may want to pack an overnight bag if you’re attending a house party, or make sure to download Uber or save a cab number to your phone to get home safely. Don’t be afraid to make the right choice for yourself.


New Years and champagne are practically synonymous! While many regard this as a drinking holiday and there can be a lot of pressure to have the “best night ever!” and wear the cutest, littlest, sparkliest dress, excessive drinking brings with it a lot of risks you’d be better off avoiding. Taking it slow, keeping your eye on your friends, and avoiding driving are key for having a fun, but safe holiday.

Wherever you go, whether it’s a house party or a bar, make sure to count your drinks, never leave your drink behind and pick it back up, and alternate drinks with water. You’ll have more fun making sure you have a safe, memorable time, even if you don’t want to the be the one drinking a glass of water on NYE – your friends will envy you in the morning! And always avoid drunk driving!

Stick Together

If you’re somewhere unfamiliar to celebrate, be it a party or a club, try to take advantage of the buddy system and check in on your friends while you’re out. Trust your gut if you get into any strange situations or notice a friend in a weird situation or if a friend seems too intoxicated. Even if you and your friends are underage, if you need to call for help – do it.  Sticking with your group and keeping an eye on one another will make sure that everyone has a safe and fun time – what’s better than ringing in the new year with your besties?


In many places, New Year’s Eve can be a cold, cold night! Dress for it! The key to staying warm is wearing clothing designed to keep you that way – wear a coat out to the bars, and use coat check to make sure you get it back. You never know how long it’ll take to get a cab home if you’re out, so make sure you have something warm to put on while you wait. If you’re attending an event outside, like a concert, First Night, or fireworks, dress warmly, drink hot liquids, move about, and go inside to warm up if need be.

Keep these tips in mind this NYE as you celebrate a new year! Wishing all our readers a Happy New Year and the very best in 2015!