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How to Survive a Night Out in Dry January

How to Survive a Night Out in Dry January main image

Are you doing Dry January this year? Dry January – the challenge of not drinking alcohol for the entire first month of the year – is easy if you become a hermit, don’t ever leave your apartment and have no friends.

But for the rest of us, Dry January can be tricky business – especially if you’re going on a night out.

Luckily for you, Dry January doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy a fun night out, so read on for some handy tips on how to survive a night out in Dry January…

1.      Remind yourself not everybody will be drinking

Dry January started as a UK health campaign, with people asking for sponsorship in return for not drinking alcohol. This enabled them to raise some money for charity, although the concept has evolved since then and many people now take part for health or financial reasons instead.

The number of people taking part in Dry January now means you won’t be the only one in the bar not drinking alcohol. Even if all your immediate friends are drinking alcohol, other people won’t be so you don’t need to feel left out.

This isn’t just true in January either. Nights out might always involve alcohol for you, but other people possibly never drink, maybe for religious reasons or because of personal choice or health reasons.

Knowing you aren’t the only one going out sober can be reassuring, especially if you start to feel left out!

2. Tell your friends what you’re doing and why

As alcoholchange.co.uk reveals on their website, there are plenty of benefits that come with taking part in Dry January, such as saving money, improving your sleep and increasing your energy levels.

Knowing these things doesn’t make it any easier though, especially if you have friends acting as the devil on your shoulder and trying to get you to give up, insisting that “one drink won’t hurt”.

The best thing to do in this situation is to let your friends know you’re doing Dry January this month and explain why you’re doing it. Once they have an understanding of your reasons and the benefits you’re hoping to experience, they will hopefully be supportive of your choice and help make nights out easier for you.

3. Try an alcohol-free bar

Yes, they exist! Grab your friends and head off to an alcohol-free bar, where you can have a great night out with your friends without having to worry about breaking your Dry January promise. 

In the UK you can try out Redemption in London, which serves alcohol-free cocktails with a twist; Brink in Liverpool, where mocktails cost only £2.95; or Sobar in Nottingham, which hosts poetry, live music and DJ events.

4. Pre-pick your non-alcoholic drink of choice

Mocktails are a great compromise when you aren’t drinking. They’re cheaper than regular alcoholic cocktails, but just as tasty, and you’ll feel probably like you’re drinking when you’re not. Plus, they’re just as Instagram-able as regular cocktails (if that’s what you’re into).

Bars will also offer alcohol-free versions of all your favorite alcoholic drinks – from G&Ts to beers to wine. These often taste just like the originals, so you won’t feel left out when all your friends are drinking.

5. Dress warm!

If you’re used to drinking lots on nights out, you’re probably used to going out without a coat – why wait in the cloakroom queue when the beer blanket does the job?

Unfortunately, for Dry January you will not be able to get away with this, especially because January (depending where in the world you are, of course) is usually freeing. Being sober means feeling the cold – so definitely bring a jacket!

6. Enjoy the hangover-free morning after

The best part of a night out in Dry January is the morning after. All your friends will be feeling terrible with horrifically bad hangovers, and the worst thing you’ll feel is a bit tired.

Feel free to be that annoying gloating friend. You’ve earned it!

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Written by Chloe Lane
A Content Writer for TopUniversities.com, Chloe has a bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of Reading and grew up in Leicestershire, UK. 

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