This article is written as part of our 12 days to a safer Christmas in Wrexham campaign
If you are venturing out in Wrexham over the festive season we want to make sure you have a memorable night – for the right reasons. Take a look at our top tips to help make sure your night out is a safe and enjoyable one.
Tip 1: Don’t load up on drinks at home
It may seem like a great idea to have a few drinks at home before your night out. You may think that it could save you money and make you more relaxed, but drinking too much at home before a night out can ultimately cut your night short. People who drink at home before going out tend to lose track of how much they have had to drink and end up getting more drunk than they had planned. This can often make you more likely to:
- Suffer illness due to excessive alcohol intake, including vomiting, which can bring your night to an unpleasant end
- Be involved in a fight
- Be injured from falling
- Become more vulnerable
Tip 2: Look out for the Best Bar None signs
When you walk into a licenced premises and see this sign, it means you have just stepped inside a best bar none (BBN) Wrexham accredited venue. Every BBN venue has put their premises to the test to prove just how committed they are to keeping you safer on your night out.
Tip 3: Eat before drinking
Make sure you eat before you go out. Food soaks up alcohol, slowing it down before it enters the bloodstream. It will provide more energy and lessen the effects the next day.
Tip 4: It’s not a race, drink at your own pace
It takes up to an hour for your body to process each unit of alcohol. So have a break between drinks. Skinny, short, male, female… everyone copes with alcohol differently, so why try and keep up with your mates? Save face (and money) by sticking to smaller rounds with a couple of mates or avoid them altogether. Turning down a drink is much less embarrassing than throwing one up.
Finish your drink too quickly and you’ll feel pressured to get another. Instead, make your drink (and your night) last longer. Chat, sip, snack, drink water, get some fresh air and chat some more.
Tip 5 : Look out for your mates
For a great night, you want your mates to be on top form too. So getting snacks and a jug of water for the table could be good for everyone. Look out for each other in case someone’s getting ahead of themselves. If they are, grab them some water or a soft drink from the bar and encourage them to pace themselves. You don’t want to have to put them in a cab, clean their sick from your shoes or miss out on the night by having to take them home.
Tip 6 : Sticking together
Make sure you leave the pub or club in pairs or as a group. If someone’s disappeared don’t assume they’re ok, find out for sure. Don’t leave anyone behind. It’s not just women who need to watch out – men on their own can attract trouble too. So keep a mate with you and try not to spend too much time hanging about at the end of the night.
Tip 7: There’s help at hand if you need it
If you are feeling a little too drunk, look out for Wrexham Street Pastors who provide compassionate support in the town centre and can help you. They work in partnership with police and can provide you with water and practical help if you need it.
You can also visit the Welfare Centre at Hafod y Wern. The centre is funded by Wrexham County Borough Council, the Welsh Ambulance Service and the Health Board. It is staffed by British Red Cross Personnel and offers medical assistance, a place to recover and care if you have had too much to drink, have taken illegal drugs, or are feeling vulnerable.
Tip 8: Heading home – Mine’s a pint…of water
If you stop drinking alcohol before the end of the evening and get some water in, your body can get a head start sorting itself out, which means getting home safely and better chance of a dealing with the hangover the next day. Drink a glass of water when you get home too to try to re-hydrate – you’ll thank yourself in the morning. Also you might want to give your body a few drink-free days to recover after a heavy drinking session.
Tip 9: Plan your journey home – Is your cab really a cab?
“Would you like a taxi?” Um. Depends if it really is one. Unlicensed cabbies are just blokes (usually) who go out late at night and find worse-for-wear people to drive home. As they’re not regulated, you’ve got no way of knowing if the driver or vehicle is safe. No matter how late, there’s no reason to go for a dodgy cab.
Get some numbers or apps for local cab firms stored on your phone or ask a member of staff in the venue who should have some. Make sure that you check any taxi you get into is properly licenced. All Wrexham Private Hire or Hackney Cab vehicles should be displaying white and purple coloured licence plates which should be on the outside of all vehicles.
Private hire vehicles will also have yellow adhesive signs in the rear windows.
All drivers should have an ID badge with their name, photograph, licence number and expiry date. If you can’t see it please ask to see it before you set off.
If you’ve got a long wait for a taxi, stay somewhere safe and well-lit until your cab turns up, ideally with a friend.
Anyone who wants more information about the possible harms of drinking can visit these websites:
Anybody who is concerned about their drinking can contact the DAN 24/7 Wales Drug & Alcohol Helpline on Freephone 0808 808 2234 or www.dan247.org.uk
Find out more about the Drink Less Enjoy More campaign HERE.
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