If you ever travel to any Hispanic country on New Year’s Eve, you will hear people greeting each other and wishing happy new year in Spanish. If you are in the middle of a lot of Spanish-speaking people talking rapidly about these fun holidays, traditions, food, and so on, I’m sure you wouldn’t want to fall behind with the conversation.
So, let’s get you prepared for the next New Year! This article will teach you the most common phrases to start using with your friends or family during the festivity. Plus, some relevant vocabulary and general insights about New Year’s Eve traditions in the Hispanic world.
How To Wish A Happy New Year In Spanish?
Happy New Year! = ¡Feliz Año Nuevo!
- A: Les deseo un muy Feliz año nuevo. (I wish you a very happy new year)
- B: Muchas gracias, nosotros también a ustedes. Que tengan un felíz año nuevo lleno de prosperidad. (Thank you very much, we also to you. Have a happy new year full of prosperity.)
What Are The Most Common New Year Wishes?
You can use the following phrases in Spanish to wish someone a happy new year. Most of the time, you will hear people wishing a happy new year on Christmas since both holidays are in the same vacation period and close to each other. So people tend to use greetings for both holidays if they don’t see each other later.
1. ¡Feliz Año!
Translation: Happy New Year!
The literal meaning of this phrase in English is ‘Happy Year.’
2. ¡Próspero Año Nuevo!
Translation: Happy New Year! (literally, Prosperous New Year!)
3. ¡Muchas Felicidades!
Translation: Best wishes!
4. ¡Feliz 2023!
5. Te Deseo Un Próspero Año Nuevo
Translation: I wish you a happy new year!
The phrase ‘próspero año nuevo’ literally translates to ‘prosperous new year.’
6. Mis Mejores Deseos En Este Año Nuevo
Translation: My best wishes for this New Year
7. Feliz Navidad Y Feliz Año Nuevo
Translation: Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year
8. Feliz Navidad Y Un Próspero Año Nuevo
Translation: Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year
New Year’s Related Spanish Words
- Countdown: La cuenta regresiva
- Dancing: Bailar
- Fireworks: Los fuegos pirotécnicos
- Midnight: La media noche
- New Year’s Day: El día de año nuevo
- New Year’s Eve: Víspera de año nuevo
- New Year’s Dinner: La cena de año nuevo
- New Year’s Concert: El concierto de año nuevo
- New Year’s fireworks: Los fuegos pirotécnicos de año nuevo
- New Year’s Eve party: La fiesta de año nuevo
- Resolution: La resolución
- Toast: El brindis
- Grapes: Uvas
- Wine: Vino
- New Year’s Turkey: Pavo de año nuevo
New Year’s Eve Traditions In Hispanic Countries
If you want to immerse in New Year’s traditions in Spanish-speaking countries, a single post isn’t enough. In fact, there are so many traditions in each country that we can’t cover them all here. So, for now, I will focus on those traditions that most countries share, which are also the most popular ones.
Eating Grapes at midnight while asking for a wish (Comer uvas mientras se pide un deseo)
During the day, we prepare grapes. Each plate has twelve grapes in total, representing the year’s month. People start eating the grapes for the first twelve minutes as soon as it’s midnight. And while eating each grape, they will ask for a wish they want to accomplish in the new year.
Small bag of lentils (Fundita de lentejas)
The small bag of lentils is a tradition in some Latin American countries that bring good luck for the next year.
Some countries such as Spain, Argentina, and Chile eat the lentils instead of having them in a small bag.
Colorful or yellow clothing (Ropa colorida o amarilla)
Everything about New Year’s has to do with luck. Some people have the superstition that how you start the year will determine the rest of it. So it is better to start with positive and colorful energy!
In some countries, the tradition is to wear super-colored clothing during the day and New Year’s party. I’ve also seen the color gold at parties and green to symbolize wealth.
In my country, people wear yellow underwear on New Year’s Eve to symbolize good luck and happiness.
Toast at midnight (Brindis a la media noche)
A toast during midnight is indispensable when spending New Year’s time with family and friends. People, who have the tradition of toasting as soon as the clock strikes midnight, will often take this opportunity to say any of the phrases you learned today for Happy New Year in Spanish.
In addition, while toasting, there are some cheers phrases that you can use to express your feelings towards the people that are spending this important time of the year with you.
Walk around the neighborhood with luggage (Caminar por el vecindario con maletas)
In some countries, we wait until midnight to take out our luggage and start walking or running as far as possible. This symbolizes our expectations of travel in the new year.
Burn dolls on the street (Quemar los monigotes en la calle)
This is a deeply rooted tradition in Ecuador, where we have a lot of fun creating dolls or puppets that we display for a few days outside our homes or business premises to burn them on New Year’s.
Often these dolls will have the forms of controversial figures that we wish to leave behind or even cartoon characters.
It was previously used to put fireworks inside of the dolls to see how they exploded while being burned, but it became prohibited as it was extremely dangerous.
Some of us also had the tradition of jumping from one side to the other of the doll while it was burning, which was also a dangerous practice.
Learn Spanish With Ling
Now you are all set to start learning the Spanish language! Isn’t it amazing to realize that you have improved your vocabulary a bit more? Imagine what else you can accomplish if you decide to start practicing a bit each day.
Perhaps this can be your following New Year’s resolution. Now that you know how to say Happy New Year in Spanish, you can strive to become a pro in speaking with Latin American or Spanish people. There’s nothing you can’t accomplish if you set your mind to it!
Luckily, Ling App is here to make your Spanish learning experience much easier, accessible, and fun! Because we have engaging and entertaining lessons and quizzes to keep you motivated along the way, you will increase your skills from beginner to advanced in no time. And the best part is that you learn words and phrases for daily use.
That’s right. Say no to the awkward sentence examples that books usually provide! Your daily activities are not a language proficiency exam. You should learn how to speak just like the locals do.
So don’t wait any longer and try the Ling App! Put it in your resolution’s list and imagine yourself being fluent soon. You can do it!