$400 Buys New Year’s Eve Tickets...to Olive Garden

PHOTO: Applebees restaurant at Times Square in New York is seen here in this Oct. 17, 2015 file photo.PlayRoberto Machado Noa/LightRocket/Getty Images
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Every New Year's Eve, many of the chain restaurants in Times Square turn into a wonderland for revelers -- but the experience comes at a steep ticket price.

With tickets ranging from $199 to as high as $799, big spenders are certainly paying for the prime views many of the restaurants have of the famous ball drop. The tickets come with the added bonus of buffet dinners, passed appetizers, open bars, champagne toasts and the unique experience of seeing your favorite chain restaurant include a dance floor and DJ.

That's not to mention bathroom access -- something the people packed outside in Times Square will probably be wishing for by the time the clock strikes midnight.

Here's a look at how some of the biggest chain restaurants in Times Square plan to get the party started on Thursday.

Olive Garden

A $400 ticket will gain you entrance to what is perhaps the most imposing location of Olive Garden in the entire United States. (Seriously. There's an escalator.) The New Year's Eve ticket price includes a buffet, open bar, midnight champagne toast, party favors, a DJ and a dance floor.

Ruby Tuesday

Ruby Tuesday is advertising the closest views to the famous Times Square ball drop for $349 a ticket. The dual-level restaurant is offering a five-hour open bar, passed appetizers from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. and a midnight champagne toast. There will also be a DJ to keep the party going all night long.

For those who want to splurge, Ruby Tuesday is also offering more expensive tickets for VIP bottle service, which comes with additional appetizers and a cozy table for New Year's Eve canoodling with a date.


Getting in the door at Applebee's will set you back $375. The New Year's Eve ticket comes with a buffet dinner, open bar and entertainment from a DJ. Parents can also bring their children for $250 a ticket.

T.G.I. Friday's

Want to spend the first Friday of 2016 in a T.G.I. Friday's? Tickets start at $199 for a four-hour, top-shelf open bar, passed appetizers and a DJ. While the restaurant doesn't have a view of the famous ball, they're promising the next best thing: a live broadcast.

Bubba Gump

We're sorry to break the news, but Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. is completely booked for their circus-themed, all-you-can-eat-and-drink celebration. The fun doesn't come cheap -- tickets this year were being sold for $799.

Hard Rock Café

Hard Rock Café is nestled in the heart of Times Square, but will be closed to the public after 1 p.m. on Thursday for a private party. The restaurant declined to say how much the deep-pocketed person or company paid to buy out the entire space for the evening.