From broken bones to traumatic brain injuries, drunk driving can cause accidents that result in a range of injuries that can last a lifetime. Not to mention the potential legal ramifications of driving drunk. That doesn’t mean you can’t go out and have a great time! You can still party at your favorite bars and nightclubs. You just have to make sure you know exactly how you’re going to get home safely.
Designate A Driver
A designated driver is a person who refrains from drinking while you’re out so that there’s someone to drive everyone home safely when the night is over.
Everyone understands the importance of designating a driver when going out and drinking, but many people still don’t have one before heading out the door.
Don’t wait until you get to the first bar to decide who is going to be the designated driver. If you do, the person you designate is likely to be disappointed and end up drinking anyway.
Instead, make sure you talk about who is going to be the sober driver before you leave home. The person who agrees is more likely to stick to it, but it also gives you time to figure out another way to get home if no one wants to be the designated driver.
Call A Ride
One of the most convenient ways to get home at the end of a night out is to call an Uber. You can also call a cab, in addition to quite a few other ride-sharing apps that include:
Make it easier to get home by figuring out who will be responsible for calling a ride, making sure that person has the app downloaded, and making sure they already have an account. The last thing you want to do in the dark outside after the bar closes is figure out how to start a Lyft account when you’ve had a few too many drinks.
Take Public Transportation
Although it’s not available everywhere, if you live in a larger city, public transportation may be an option.
For public transportation to be an option when you go out, you have to know what’s available and when it runs. For example, if you’re in Chicago or New York, you may be able to hitch a ride on the train, even during the early morning hours. Know exactly where you’re going to get on the train and know your stop before you start drinking so it’s not something you’re trying to figure out while you’re at the bar.
Buses are available in many areas, even smaller cities, but they don’t usually run quite as long as the trains in larger cities. Take a look at the bus schedule where you live and see what time the bus stops for the last time. Make a plan to be out of the bar and waiting by then so you still have plenty of time to make it home.
Even the best-laid plans can go sideways before the night is over. You aren’t out of luck if you didn’t set up your ride ahead of time, either. If you need to find a way to get home safely, consider calling someone.
If you can’t figure out how to get home safely, call a friend or family member to come and get you. It’s much better to bother someone in the early morning hours than it is to get behind the wheel and end up in an accident.
You can make a plan to call someone ahead of time too! Ask a friend who is at home for the night if they would be willing to come and get you when the night is over.
Get A Room
If you know getting home is going to be a challenge, consider putting off going home until the next day and getting a hotel room instead.
Many bars and nightclubs are within easy walking distance of hotels. It may not cost as much as you think, either.
One of the best ways to get a great deal on a hotel room is to look for last-minute deals. Whether you book a room a day or two ahead of your outing or you walk into the lobby when the night is over, you can stay safe and get a hotel room on the cheap.
Walking is an option too! It’s one of the safest ways to get home after a night out.
Plan your route ahead of time. After all, it’s a lot easier to get lost after you have had a few too many drinks.
It’s also a good idea to plan out which bars you’re going to and when. Plan to start at the bar that’s furthest away and wrap up at the one that’s closer to home so you have a lot less further to walk after the bar closes.
Do It Together
Transportation is a hugely important consideration when you’re planning a night out, but who you do it with is equally important.
Drinking alcohol and being out late at night by yourself can be extremely dangerous. Predators are always looking for the easiest target, and tipsy people at the bar who are by themselves make good targets.
Never go out alone. Make sure you spend the entire evening with at least one friend. If you’re going out with a group, create a buddy system to keep everybody safe. From walking home together to hitching a ride together to making sure you don’t go home with someone you just met, the buddy system does have the potential to save your life.
Going out at night can be a lot of fun, but that fun can be ruined pretty quickly if you don’t know exactly how to get home safely. Take the time before you leave the house to figure out how you’re going to get home and who is going to help you get there so you remember your night out for all the right reasons.
Featured photo by Aleksandr Popov on Unsplash.