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#SmartStudent: 5 tips on drinking safely when you're abroad

Our new #SmartStudent series brings you simple tips that help you ease into life as an international student and be a responsible resident of the country you have chosen to study in
BY Cherryy Chauhan |   01-08-2017

We can all use a drink from time to time, whether it’s a cocktail at a night club, or a cold beer at the end of a long day. But, drinking should always be accompanied with caution. Even if you think that a drink or two is harmless, situations can swirl out of control, and when you are thousands of miles from home, only you can truly be responsible for yourself.

So here are a few tips to follow to stay safe when you’re studying abroad and going to a party that features alcohol:

  1. Don’t mix drinking and driving

    While drinking alcohol in a moving vehicle is permissible in many US state, driving under the influence is not. Countries abroad have strict rules against DUI. It’s mandatory that you understand and follow the government’s rules.
     
  2. Don’t drink in public

    At least not without checking the local laws. In many parts of the US, you cannot carry an open container of alcohol in a public space. Every country has rules about intoxication in public. Not only is it safer, but it is also wiser if you open your cans and uncork your bottles in a pub or at home. Getting arrested is not such a great party trick, after all.
     
  3. Know your limits

    Exploring the traditional drinks of a new country (Guinness in Ireland, Spaten Oktoberfest in Germany) can be a test of your limits. So, make sure that you go easy, since you can’t judge beforehand how strong an unfamiliar drink may be. Understand and analyse your limits, and do not exceed them. This will reduce the chances of you looking like a buffoon.
     
  4. Eat, drink, and be merry

    Keep a bottle of water handy with you at all times. The best antidote for intoxication is to neutralize the booze with water. Also, remember to eat either before or while you’re drinking. Don’t drink on an empty belly, and try not to mix your drinks to avoid a nasty hangover.
     
  5. Mind your manners

    Exploring drinks abroad doesn’t just mean the local brews but also drinking customs. For example, in some countries, it’s considered disrespectful to fill your own glass before everybody else’s. So, to prevent such awkwardness, acquaint yourself with local culture and customs. If anything, it will make the experience more fun!
     
Caption for GIF with two guys: Ready to drink smart now? Cheers!
 Ready to drink smart now? Cheers!

Got any tips to share on drinking safely abroad? Email us or leave a comment below.



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