(DailyExpertNews) — For a while, it looked like we could ring in major cities around the world on New Year’s Eve with something akin to the great celebrations of yore.
A new wave of Covid and the rapid spread of the new Omicron variant of the coronavirus have dashed those hopes – at least in part of the world.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is still thinking about what to do with the famous Times Square celebration and has promised to have an answer before Christmas. For now, it is still scheduled and all guests must be fully vaccinated to participate.
Some major cities in Europe, where Omicron’s spread has been alarming, have already announced that they are canceling or phasing out their plans entirely.
Other cities with iconic celebrations are still planning to host their events.
From December 21, this is what some of the world’s cities with traditionally big New Year’s Eve events are doing.
The following cities (or countries) have already announced that they are canceling their major shindigs:
Germany will impose strict contact restrictions from December 28 to contain the spread of Covid and ban New Year’s Eve gatherings, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz announced on Tuesday, December 21.
That means no major fireworks are set off in Berlin, the capital, or at other major gathering places such as Munich and Frankfurt.
From Dec. 28, up to 10 people will be allowed to gather in groups, regardless of whether they have been vaccinated or recovered, Scholz said. Children 13 and under are exempt from the new contact restrictions.
Public New Year’s Eve celebrations in Scotland are being cancelled, Scottish Prime Minister Nicola Sturgeon said on Tuesday, December 21.
Sturgeon said the move “will unfortunately also mean that large-scale Hogmanay celebrations – including those planned here in our capital – will not take place. I know how disappointing this will be for those looking forward to these events.”
“Due to the spate of Covid cases, we have made the difficult decision to cancel our NYE event in Trafalgar Square,” Khan’s verified account tweet said. “The safety of all Londoners must come first.”
A statement accompanying the tweet said the celebration was expected to host 6,500 people in Trafalgar Square.
Instead, a program will air on BBC One at midnight, Khan said.
RIO DE JANEIRO
New Year’s Eve celebrations in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil’s party capital, have been canceled amid mounting concerns about the coronavirus, Mayor Eduardo Paes tweeted on Saturday, December 18.
“We respect science. Since there are differing opinions among scientific committees, we will always stick to the most restrictive,” Paes wrote.
“It is with sadness that I make the decision, but we cannot organize the party without the guarantee of all the health authorities. Unfortunately, we cannot organize a party of this magnitude, where we have a lot of costs and logistics, without the minimum time to prepare,” said the mayor.
Events still planned
Sydney, Australia, plans to hold its spectacular fireworks display for New Year’s Eve 2021.
PETER PARKS/AFP/Getty Images
Not all cities in the world have canceled their celebrations. Here are some of the towns traditionally known for their exceptional fireworks and major New Year’s Eve events that were still planning on December 21: