I love me a great happy hour. As a bartender who can mix a mean cocktail – if I can toot my own horn – I enjoy heading out with a girl friend or two and trying out a different drink or three. Enjoying the atmosphere of a swank spot with a good vibe always calls for an evening if good times and jokes.
And of course, quite the empty wallet.
When you’re hanging out, catching up and enjoying yourself it’s easy to forget that dollars are mounting up. So naturally, a quick drink turns into one too many and a karaoke rendition of “Single Ladies.” Don’t judge.
Peer pressure is a mother. Even when you attempt to skip out on a night out, you may have friends like mine that are masters of persuasion. The nerve of them.
While there are times I go against my “just one” rule, there are a few strategies I’ve adopted that allow me to save and enjoy a great Jameson Sour every now and then.
Keep It Cash Only
When meeting up for any happy hour on a budget, withdraw the amount of money you’re willing to spend and keep your debit card at home. This forces you to stick to the amount of money you intended to spend and makes you feel awful for pulling out any secondary cards – the fifth or sixth cocktail is not worth it!
Beat The Pressure
No one wants to be labeled the alcoholic friend. Start a pool with your friends that force you to save those nickels and dimes spent on happy hour hopping. This ensures that no one will force your hand to come out and will also create a sense of community to save some serious cash.
Similar to keeping it cash only, give yourself a drink limit. If drinks are going for $5 a pop – limit yourself to two with $20 I’m your pocket. Do you have the will power?