Orlando was ranked the No. 1 place for a fun - and affordable - New Year’s Eve celebration, according to a study by WalletHub.
San Francisco and Atlanta came in at No. 2 and No. 3, respectively. Other Florida cities included Miami at No. 7, Tampa at No. 13, Jacksonville at No. 53, St. Petersburg at No. 63 and Hialeah at No. 90.
The financial data website based its list off of three dimensions: entertainment and food, costs and safety and accessibility. It weighed entertainment and food most heavily.
WalletHub translated those three aspects into about 20 weighted categories spanning everything from the average price of a New Year’s Eve Party ticket to to the lowest price of wine to the lowest price of a three-star hotel on the holiday.
Orlando made top marks for the number of nightlife options per capita, the number of restaurants per capita and the legality of fireworks.
Here’s how Orlando fared in the other metrics:
5th – Average Price of a New Year’s Eve Party Ticket
20th – Average Beverage Price (Wine Price)
55th – Lowest Price of a Three-Star Hotel on New Year’s Eve
4th – Luxury Shopping
55th – Walkability
4th – Number of Music Venues per Capita
In order to identify the best spots for celebrating New Year’s Eve, WalletHub’s analysts compared the 100 most populated cities across three key dimensions: 1) Entertainment & Food, 2) Costs and 3) Safety & Accessibility.
Next, we compiled 20 relevant metrics, which are listed below with their corresponding weights. Each metric was graded on a 100-point scale, with 100 representing the most favorable conditions for New Year’s Eve partiers.
Finally, we calculated the overall score for each city based on its weighted average across all metrics and used the resulting scores to rank them accordingly.
In determining our sample, we chose the city proper in each case and excluded the cities in the surrounding metro area.
Entertainment & Food – Total Points: 50
- New Year’s Eve Popularity: Double Weight (~7.69 Points)
- Legality of Fireworks: Full Weight (~3.85 Points)
- Number of New Year’s Eve Festivals, Performances & Galas per Capita: Double Weight (~7.69 Points)
- Duration of the 2016 Fireworks Show: Full Weight (~3.85 Points)
Note: For this particular metric, “Duration” is measured in minutes.
- Number of Restaurants per Capita: Full Weight (~3.85 Points)
- Luxury Shopping: Full Weight (~3.85 Points)
Note: This metric measures the number of jewelry shops per capita and the number of gourmet specialty-food stores per capita.
- Number of Nightlife Options per Capita: Full Weight (~3.85 Points)
- Number of Music Venues per Capita: Full Weight (~3.85 Points)
- WalletHub “Recreation” (Entertainment, Recreational Facilities & Parks Quality) Ranking: Triple Weight (~11.54 Points)
Costs – Total Points: 30
- Average Price of a New Year’s Eve Party Ticket: Full Weight (~5.00 Points)
- Affordable Fine Dining: Full Weight (~5.00 Points)
Note: This metric measures the availability of affordable restaurants rated 4.5 stars or higher.
- Average Beverage Price: Full Weight (~5.00 Points)
Note: For this particular metric, wine price was used to measure “Beverage Price.”
- Restaurant-Meal Costs: Full Weight (~5.00 Points)
- Lowest Price of a Three-Star Hotel on New Year’s Eve: Full Weight (~5.00 Points)
- Pampering: Full Weight (~5.00 Points)
Note: This metric measures beauty-salon and haircut costs.
Safety & Accessibility – Total Points: 20
- Walkability: Full Weight (~4.00 Points)
- Traffic Congestion: Full Weight (~4.00 Points)
- Neighborhood Security: Full Weight (~4.00 Points)
Note: This metric measures the crime rate.
- Pedestrian-Fatality Rate: Full Weight (~4.00 Points)
- Forecasted Precipitation for Dec. 31: Full Weight (~4.00 Points)
Sources: Data used to create this ranking were collected from the U.S. Census Bureau, Council for Community and Economic Research, Priceline, Texas A&M Transportation Institute, American Pyrotechnics Association, Federal Bureau of Investigation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Walk Score, Eventbrite, AccuWeather, Kayak, Eventbrite, Yelp, Numbeo and WalletHub research.