First Posted: 01/01/2012

Got this interesting question when i was waiting for New Year 2012( at abt 9PM 31 Dec 2011). I knew that few countries start the year early, and few other countries start the year late. I knew this right from my childhood.

Some years ago… We all, in India, were waiting for New Year to arrive, while for some of them the New Year had already started. I was the watching News with my Dad, and suddenly came a new year celebration from some eastern country. I was actually aware that Sun(and Moon) rise and set at different times(intervals) for different countries. That’s why Day and Night happens at different times. Here in India it’s Afternoon now, while in major parts of US it’s Midnight/they are yet to have a dawn. He had said me about countries celebrating New Year at different time.

This variation in time for celebrating New Year is because Day and Night happens at different times for different countries. So, countries have different standard times based on their longitudinal location. Here in India, it’s the longitude through Varanasi which deters the standared time IST(i.e., GMT(UTC)+5.30). So the time in countries change based on their longitude, which is usually expressed using (UTC +/- **).

Similarly, there’s a gap of 25hrs in time between two successive land, which reside just next to each other with a gap of 1950 knots in distance. I mean, these two countries reside very close to each other, yet celebrate the New Year with a gap of 25 hours(Because their Longitudes are different). Now, in this Current time, Midway has 45min to New Year, while Kiritimati is already in the second day(2nd Jan) of the Year. So here are the facts incurred:

Kiritimati Christmas Island, Kiribati Celebrates the New Year First.
Midway, USA Celebrates New Year at the Last.

*Kiritimati is an inhabited island, which belongs to Republic of Kiribati.

*Midway is a coral island that encircles a lagoon, near the northwestern end of the Hawaiian archipelago, about one-third of the way between Honolulu, Hawaii, and Tokyo, Japan

So, Country Kiribati celebrates the every New Year FIRST, while USA(part of) celebrates every New Year LAST! Here’s a list of Countries in a column, based on the time delay in celebrating the New Year. Wish you a Happy New Year!