The holidays are here! Bring on friends, family, delicious food and fun. Now, for those of us who are 21+, all of the fun may include having some festive holiday drinks. But many underestimate the effects of alcohol and fail to plan out how to get home. Let’s maximize the fun and minimize the risk by following these 5 Tips For Being a Great Designated Driver.
According to Alcohol.org, a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent g/dL or above is considered to be impaired driving in all 50 states. Don’t ruin the holidays by making a completely avoidable mistake. Plan in advance to use a ride sharing app or public transportation. If neither is an option, pick a designated driver before the fun begins. Chances are there will be more than one night out this holiday season so it makes sense to take turns. Encourage others to get into the spirit by being the first to volunteer. You can even make the night out a gift to those you love! Being a designated driver is a big responsibility, but it doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy yourself. Here are some simple tips for being a great designated driver.
1) Bring on the mocktails!
It’s really simple – don’t drink. Not only do you run the risk of one drink turning into too many, you’ll also lose the trust of those you made a very important promise to. Keep your promise and still have fun by bringing your favorite non-alcoholic beverages. For some delicious ideas (Non-Alcoholic Hot buttered Rum, anyone?), check out TOWN&COUNTRY’s holiday mocktails. Plus, you’ll be a hero when you share them with others who have also made a promise not to drink.
2) Plan ahead
A good DD not only takes their responsibility seriously, but makes sure everyone else does, too. Let everyone know you’ve got their back so they can have an amazing time. Send ground rules and details in a fun invite a few days in advance. Stock the car with supplies including bottles of water for hydration and bags like these just in case someone enjoys themselves a bit too much.
3) About those ground rules
The designated driver sets the rules and communicates them clearly. Remind everyone on the ride over what those rules are. Ground rules should include important details such as what time you plan to leave and where to meet at the end of the night in case you get separated. After spending several hours being on your best behavior, the last thing you want to do is search for your friends.
4) Designated DRIVER
The DD has many responsibilities, but the actual driving part is the most important. Make sure your driver’s license is valid and that your car is in good working order. Check all lights including signal, running, tail lights, and most importantly headlights. Map your route in advance to avoid getting lost, and check the weather forecast. Make your co-pilot be the DJ so you can focus on the road. Be ready for distractions such as poor driving conditions and backseat shenanigans. Stay within the speed limit and follow all rules of the road to avoid being pulled over. While law enforcement always works to keep us safe, they can be extra diligent during this time of year.
5) Have a sense of humor
You’re going to have a great time, even without drinking. But let’s face it. There may be times when being the DD isn’t all fun. The best designated drivers keep an eye on their friends, their behavior, and their health. If it’s time to go, approach your friends with a sense of humor and be ready for anything. And remember, YOU set the ground rules.
If your ride needs a little love before you hit the road to celebrate the holidays, find an automotive service professional through Openbay. It is a free service that connects you with shops nearby, provides quotes and allows you to book your appointment online. And remember, NEVER drink and drive.