When I think of summer, I think of sunshine, the beach, flip flops, sunglasses and.. yes, alcohol. Sangria, mojitos, beer, and everything yummy.
I don’t drink all that much – very rarely will I have even a glass of wine during the week (simply because I’m usually super busy), but every couple weekends I’ll go out with some friends & the boy. This can be a major wallet drain, because alcohol is expensive (especially here in Canada).
It can add up quickly, so here are some tips to save money this summer on alcohol.
1. Drink at home
If possible, have a couple of glasses of [pick your poison] before going out. A glass of wine at the comedy club we went to last weekend was $11. I can buy a whole (large) bottle of wine for $15 at the liquor store.
Have friends over prior to going out for a drink or two if you aren’t driving to your destination.
2. Pick Your Liquor Store Wisely
If you are planning to have a couple of drinks at home, and are venturing out to the liquor store, pick the store from which you shop wisely.
It’s kind of a bummer, because in Canada, the government run liquor stores are quite a bit cheaper than private stores. Who doesn’t want to support local small businesses? But sometimes, savings trumps social responsibility, so shop around a bit.
3. Go For Promotional Items
Most people find what they like and stick with it, but why not try something new every once in awhile?
Usually there are promotional items on sale at the liquor store. Sometimes there are taste testers, and they offer a couple of dollars off a case of the promotional item because it’s new and they want to gain exposure. You never know, you might really like it!
4. Make Your Own
This might sound crazy, but why not try to make your own liquor?
I don’t mean bootlegging moonshine on your spare time, but rather finding a “U Brew” or local wine/beer making facility.
This can be a fun activity, too. It usually comes out cheaper than buying a bunch of bottles of wine or beer, and it’s something to do.
4. [For Canadians] Bring Some Back
When you go across the border (to shop, fill up, whatever other reason) bring some cheap liquor back. Americans pay a lot less for alcohol than Canadians do, and it can be found at most gas stations, grocery stores, and even drug stores.
When we went to Oregon, we got a bottle of wine that we didn’t end up drinking for like $8. That’s substantially cheaper than we’d be able to find it in Canada, so we brought it back with us. The border patrol had no problem with it. Make sure to check the limits that you can bring back, though.
How do you save money on alcohol?