The Torontoist Guide to Celebrating New Year's on a Budget
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The Torontoist Guide to Celebrating New Year’s on a Budget

How to ring in 2016 without applying for a loan.

We at Torontoist don’t believe that New Year’s Eve planning should come down to a decision between spending a lonesome evening on the couch, or an entire month’s rent on bottle service. Ergo, we’ve put together a list of some offbeat and wallet-friendly options for the biggest party night of the year.

We hope you welcome 2016 the way you desire!


Those who grew up glued to MuchMusic will be excited to hear that Master T is returning to his 90s VJ glory and hosting a good old fashioned Video Dance. Smiling Buddha (961 College Street), $20 in advance.

If you want to go even further into the past, head to Chronologic and dance to all of the best music from each decade (in order). The Garrison (1197 Dundas Street West), 9:30p.m., $25

Welcome to the Jungle mixes the nostalgic with the exotic, offering live rockabilly from the Greasemarks, with Gogo dancers Dolly Berlin and Marylin St Evans. Come dressed in your best jungle attire for a chance to win prizes. The Shameful Tiki Room (1378 Queen Street West), 5 p.m., FREE.

Let’s face it—you’ll likely be a hot mess by 3 a.m. Balance this out by starting your evening on an ultra-classy and cultured note at Bravissimo! where performers from the Opera Canada Symphony and Chorus will take you through some of the greatest arias in history. Roy Thomson Hall, 7 p.m., $55-$145.

While pretty much every bar will have canned tunes of varying quality, there are a number of venues featuring live musicians, and well-curated playlists that make the cover charge worthwhile. Check out one (or more, if you’re feeling adventurous) of these nifty shows: