Kiribati: New Year has officially begun, as midnight passed in Samoa, Tonga and Christmas Island/Kiribati, the first places in the world to welcome in 2018.
The last places on Earth to see in the New Year are minor outlying US islands like Baker Island and Howland Island – although these are uninhabited. The last inhabited island is American Samoa which will welcome 2018 when it’s 11am in London on January 1.
The officials in Samoa had decided in 2011 to move from the eastern side of the international date line to the western side. This made it the first country to celebrate the New Year instead of the last.