Getting home safely after a night out: the best options

08 Jan 14

Responsible Drinking There are plenty of alternatives to drinking and driving. 

Vehicle accidents caused by drinking and driving are far too common on our roads today. It’s really not worth risking your life, or the lives of others by drinking and driving. Being caught over the legal limit  can also have serious repercussions including a criminal record.

The good news is that you don’t need to risk it. We’ve compiled some handy options for getting home safely if you’re planning on enjoying a few drinks on a night out.

Remember that it’s essential to know how you are getting home before you head out. Preparation makes all the difference.

Your options:

1. Stay over

Be a houseguest. If your party is at a friends’ house it’s a good idea to arrange to stay over. A benefit of this is enjoying breakfast the next morning with your friends and reminiscing about the night before. This will also mean another contribution in the form of helping to tidy up. These types of activities are always more enjoyable when shared!

2. The designated driver

If you're going as a group and taking a car then decide beforehand who's going to be the designated driver. You could take turns to do this over a period of time. You could also all offer to pay for the designated drivers’ meal out to show your appreciation.

 3. “Taxi!”

There are taxi services available in almost every town in South Africa. Keep the number of your local licenced taxi service on your phone. We recommend that you arrange a pickup time at the beginning of the evening and set a reminder on your phone when it’s time to be collected. Alternatively call them before you head out for the evening to make sure they are going to be available, and then confirm a pickup time at least an hour in advance.

Always make sure you have cash set aside for getting home. Put it in a separate pocket of your wallet, or in an envelope in your bag to prevent spending it prematurely.

4. The professional designated driver

Goodfellas is one service that will drive you home in your own car. This is a very convenient option although you will need to make sure you are a paid-up member to take advantage. As always it’s wise to arrange this before you head out for the evening.

 5. There’s an app for that

Here’s one more thing your smartphone can do: Hail a taxi! When you download one of these taxi apps your GPS will conveniently tell the taxi where to go. You can also rate the service you received as well as view others’ ratings through the app. Some of these services will also allow you to pay without carrying cash.

Here are three options, all new in SA:

One more tip: ICE

ICE (In Case of Emergency) numbers

It’s a good idea to have an ICE number saved into your phone. ICE is an acronym for ‘In Case of Emergency’ and is commonly known to be the number saved onto one’s phone of a next of kin or guardian. Save a number in your contacts list with the name ICE and should anything happen to you this could be a great help.