One Year Booze Free

One huge reason people drink alcohol when they go out…

…it’s cheaper!!

Since I’ve stopped drinking, one of the things that annoys me more than anything is extortionate pub prices. I am sure you will agree (at least if you are from UK) that it’s now common place to be charged as much (if not more) for a pint of coca cola as you would for a pint of beer or cider. Not everywhere is this greedy but it does seem to be a normal practice to charge over £2.50 for a soft drink, including lime and soda!

Yesterday I went to meet a friend in a pub to catch up. Luckily they had coffees, teas and hot chocolates as I was not in the mood for a fizzy drink, juice or water. However, when I ordered a herbal tea (basically hot water with a hint of mint), I had to give a silent(ish) sigh as I paid a whopping £1.50 for it.I could buy a box of tea for that much in the shops.

Although I understand there are taxes and I am paying to sit in the pub – it just doesn’t seem to be worth it. Perhaps I should just drink tap water. How is this country going to get rid of the thuggish, “binge drinking” reputation we have, when we save more money drinking alcohol?

Looking at some forums on the subject, here are some interesting comments:

“have been to two local pubs this week (I support my sons Band). First pub charged me £3.40 for a pint of best bitter and £1.70 for a glass of orange and lemonade total £5.10. Second bar charged me £4.60 for tin coke and also orange and lemonade. The coke was £1.50. “

“It’s sadly a tough one for non alcohol drinkers, but pubs are suffering as it is with the smoking ban, if they drop the prices of soft drinks they’re going to have even more problems. “

“I used to work in a fast food restaurant that used the same “syrup” stuff that was mixed with cheap carbonated water. I believe there’s a ‘suggested’ proportion of syrup to water, most places can alter that so they make more profit – that’s why you get some places where the coke tastes thick and very sweet (from the syrup), and other places where it’s watery as anything. “

Most interesting of all….

“As an ex-publican, I thought I’d explain what’s happening with soft drink mark ups in public houses.

To put it bluntly, for most landlords (ie the ones that don’t manage chain pubs like Wetherspoons – who can bulk buy beer on such a huge scale, that they get charged a quarter or less of the normal price), the price of alcohol – beer in particular – is incredibly high. I single out beer, as it is the mainstay of the pub trade, yet other alcoholic products don’t fare much better.

If you were to break down a pint of beer into where the money goes (staff wages, rent, price the publican pays for the beer, bills, etc), then the 5mm head is what makes the publican’s profit. It’s worth noting that most of the time that ends up in the drip tray thanks to staff over pouring. In short, publicans generally make a loss on their alcohol. They have to charge up some where, and that ends up being on mixers and soft drinks.”


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