This is a guest post by Candice Walsh from Candice Does the World. Candice is a travel writer and blogger currently stationed in St. John’s, Newfoundland. When she’s not shooting whiskey and hitting on men, she’s eating nachos and dreaming about her next big adventure. She writes for Matador Network, AOL Canada, CheapO Canada, NileGuide, and more.
I’m a cheapskate. I like my nightlife, and it is not an inexpensive hobby to maintain. And while I do enjoy buying everyone a round of JagerBombs on occasion, I have a BA in English and I am shit poor. You might already know some of these tips, but maybe not all.
And don’t get all ethical on me for “ripping off” a bar/business. Do you know how much they mark-up the price of their alcohol? I don’t know either. But it’s a lot.
1. Sharing Stamps
When you’re hand-stamped after paying the cover fee, slip out back, meet your friend, lick your hand, and press it to hers for a few minutes. Don’t worry about toxic ink. Sharing spittle not your thing? Go home, prude.
2. Leave the bank cards and credit cards at home
This one really only works if you have willpower and the ability to mentally negotiate with your drunk conscience. Typically, this does not work for me, and it won’t work for the “casual” drinker. Before heading out, only bring enough cash for bar cover and a cab home. Leave the credit cards and bank cards behind, and remember not to spend your safety cash.
3. Drink Beforehand
Probably the most logical, obvious option: down those drinks before heading out. Think about a half-case of booze, totalling about $12 – that’s about $2/beer. At bars, the price can be triple that amount, thus leading you to pay nearly $40 for a crappy drunk.
4. Use your feminine wiles/manly charm
Alright, so it’s mean to lead people on, but sometimes they deserve it. Ladies, how often have you been approached from behind by a man and his denim penis? If you’re a woman, simply flirt up a storm with a guy who’s looking to get some, until he offers to buy you a drink or two. He’s easy to spot: greasy hair, watching from the sidelines, checking out every girl who walks past. But watch your drink, and keep friends nearby for an easy escape route.
Guys, you possess the ability to instantly create bonds with other dudes. At nearly any venue, you will find an older, drunken man who is just dying to beguile you with tales of old fishing days, life as a war veteran, or the problems of youth today. These guys are lonely, and they want to chat. Invite one over to the table and engage in friendly conversation: he’ll be buying rounds before long. You get booze, he gets companionship. Win win.
5. Trick the bartender
This one is courtesy of Cosmo magazine…which, now that I think about it, I’m embarrassed to have read. Find an empty beer bottle, fill it up in the bathroom with lukewarm water, and return it to the bar complaining it was served warm. Voila, icy cold, free beer. Even if you’re a sleazebag for doing so.
6. Scope out the specials
Almost all bars have happy hours, specials nights, or themed weekdays. Ladies’ Night, One-Dollar Shots, Two-For-One White Russians, and more. Search entertainment listings online, or check for some mobile phone apps. Or, hey, ask a local.
7. Go early
In most venues, you will rarely have to pay a door cover during the afternoon, even if the venue is popular. Show up around 1, have a pint, and: a) stay all day until the place starts rockin’ b) leave and request a hand-stamp so you can come back later.
This is a tricky one, however, because some bars will change their hand-stamp colours/design when the night staff takes over. Do a little research beforehand.
Well, there you have it, folks. Now you too can be a cheapskate like me! You’ll thank me later.
Flickr Photo: Hop Talk