Over-indulgence throughout the Christmas period is a time-honoured tradition. If only selecting which club to visit on New Year's Eve was as simple.

Club promoters started the clamour for your festive pounds weeks ago and have devised endless distractions to suit every conceivable palate. The range of music available is extensive; the number of clubs infinite.

This year, promoters have been equally imaginative in setting prices for their events. Fifty pounds will gain you entry to any club this New Year but many ticket prices are so inflated that you'll require additional funds if you want to toast the New Year with anything stronger than lemonade.

If you want to make it a night to remember, it's essential to shop around. If you want to see a particular DJ don't rush out and buy a ticket on the strength of seeing one flyer. Most of the top DJs (from both sides of the Atlantic) will be playing at three or four venues throughout New Year's Eve (often in different parts of the country).

When you've decided on your preferred venue, speed is of the essence; many big venues are already sold out.

For those of you who are baffled by the choice, here are a selection of clubs that promise much this New Year.

The Ministry of Sound (right), 103 Gaunt Street, London SE1 (0171-378 6528) boasts all the necessary ingredients for an excellent New Year for pounds 35. Among those appearing: Lil' Louis, Terry Hunter, the exceptional Smokin' Jo plus Michael Watford. The vibe here is always sophisticated yet unpretentious and the MOS has a reputation for hosting one of the finest New Year bashes in the capital.

Club United Nations 415-419 High Road, London N17 (0181-808 0808) has blown up big time this year and is now one of the hottest spots around. The combination of jungle and garage has punters queueing around the block. Their drum and bass line-up features Fabio, Grooverider & DJ Rap. Chrissy Tee, Rob Blake & Jay C are some of the DJs in the house and garage area. Don't leave it too long to bag your pounds 25 tickets for the New Year's Eve Ball.

Roger Michael has built up quite a reputation in clubland. Atomic Model at Iceni, The Next Big Thing at the Hanover Grand and Eyeball Arizona at Subterania are just some of the gigs on his CV.

Tickets (and other information, including the price) for Michael's exclusive New Year Avant-Garde Catwalk Ball at the Porchester Halls in Queensway, London W9, are only available from Roger Michael Associates (0171-371 0430). Congratulations if you manage to get some.

If you're in London and enjoy your house on a garage tip, then you will have been to the Satellite Club The Colloseum, 1 Nine Elms Lane, Vauxhall, London SW8 (0171-582 0300). Don't delay in securing your tickets for The New Year's Eve Party. The Hogmany line-up includes Craig Dimech, Linden C, Bobby and Steve and Darren G. All for pounds 25.

Cheeky People (0181-780 3332) may well have the most innovative gig this New Year's Eve. The line-up includes Smokin' Jo, but even she may be upstaged by the venue. Set in an Edwardian music hall, "somewhere in Chelsea" (the precise location is being kept under wraps), the room will be transformed into a spectacular 1920s-style French Cabaret.

It's almost impossible to visualise the scale of World Dance, an all- nighter at the London Arena in the Docklands. Suffice to say, the evening is expected to attract around 11,500 people (10,000 in the main arena). Among those appearing are Mickey Finn, Fabio, Randall & Slipmatt. pounds 25 members, pounds 30 non-members.

Outside the capital, Club UK in Ipswich, Hollywood, Princes St, Suffolk (01473 230666/0860 223572) continues to draw people into the town. The club works well by blending excellent garage with harder house and techno but its main attraction is, wait for it, friendly bouncers. pounds 23 secures entry.

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