Cash: perennial arbiter of joy and sorrow, judicator of revelry, and buzz-kill extraordinaire! The greenery is the one commodity equally lusted and despised by the masses. Unfortunately, when the queso is on the wane, the options for bacchanalia appear to similarly diminish—yet appearances are deceiving! With a little ingenuity, monetary “belt-tightening," and liberal outlook, the fiesta can be resurrected from the ashes of financial ruin!
Boozing on a budget is an art form like anything else. Not for the faint of heart, or any who turn their nose at the prospect of roughing it in the proverbial “drinking wilds”; getting a quality buzz with limited funds entails some abstract expressionism (of the liquid variety).
Let’s hypothetically assume our budget for any particular evening is ole papa Jackson ($20)—let the creativity commence! Here are 5 tactics to maximizing your BAC, conserving the green, and letting loose the beast in some frugal revelry!
Desperate times call for desperate measures. Gone is the veneer of decency and facades of brand quality. When the desire for rambunctious festivity outweighs the inculcated myopia of brand loyalty—the doors of enlightenment jubilantly swing open! Let us be frank: a 12 pack of Schaeffer induces intoxication at roughly the same rate as a 12er’ of Heineken, Corona, Dogfish Head, or any other import/craft beer. Time to acquaint yourself with the undesirables of the drinking food chain: Natty Light, PBR, Milwaukee’s Best, Georgi Vodka, Box Wine—these are your allies! Like that decrepit Yugo puttering along the BQE fumigating like a fiend—it may not be pretty, but it gets the job done (eventually)!
Buy in Bulk
The age old adage “quality over quantity” need not apply here. In dire financial straits, the polar opposite is true—mass quantity typically denotes a lucrative drinking alternative. Let us compare: a 36 pack of Natty Light ($17) versus a 12 pack of Heineken ($15)—a clear winner. Be sure to investigate your local Beer Distributor and liquor haunts for bulk specials like: 36 packs, kegs, or cases of wine/liquor. It’s a tactic employed to great effectiveness by the likes of Bj’s, Costco, Price Club, and slew of other imitators—why not the liquid glory?
The flask is the bosom pal to those in need of a little extra sauce during exhibitions of public decorum. Nestled neatly into a blazer’s inside pocket, or saucily strapped via garter belt, the flask’s subtlety belies its versatility. Pack that beast full of potent goodness (at least 80 proof plus), and covertly swig away at your leisure. Bonus points for those ordering a soda or juice and spiking it with the hidden fury!
Perhaps this should go without even mentioning—it’s likely an American institution by now—but the “Pre-game” is easily the most potent weapon within the budget boozer’s arsenal. Bars & clubs will assuredly rip you off on the drink front in justification for their providing ambiance, music, and the opportunity to connect socially—understandably so. To avoid the financial sodomy targeted specifically at your wallet, the obvious option is to take the early train to Smashville! Why pay $6 for a brew at the club, when you can polish off a 12er’ from the bottom of the barrel at similar cost? Attaining a healthy buzz prior to entering the nocturnal destination of your choice assures you of two things: a) you will pay infinitely less for drinks due to already being smashed; and b) you brought the party.
Work the System
Like those fanatics over at “Extreme Couponing," you can’t truly call yourself an American unless you exploit the system. America is rife with loopholes and facades of “saving” that ultimately just result in you spending money—albeit not as much as initially advertised. The nightlife scene is no different. Abound with drink specials, 2 for 1’s, reduced admission, guest lists, “buy backs," and a slew of other avenues to lure the potential reveler in—one must be alert for the potential to one up the system! By employing the previously mentioned tactics, one can easily milk the worth of Mr. Jackson throughout any given evening. By spending anywhere between $5-10 bucks on a pregame, and the remaining coin utilizing the given “drink specials” of a night—one can assuredly achieve a quality evening out without breaking the bank!