Long-time lurker and recent joiner here. I discovered MMM in late 2014, and really started working through the canon and applying his principles in the spring of 2015. I am currently just a few articles short of having read the entire blog.
I'm throwing down a challenge for myself in 2017, but actually starting today, and for anyone else that wants to join. Since January 1, 2016 I have been keeping track of every dollar I spent on alcohol and how much alcohol I have been drinking. I'm embarrassed to say that I recently crossed the $2,500.00 CDN mark
, as well as being on track to end the year at 1.2 drinks per day (I don't actually drink 1.2 drinks per day, but I am bad at downing several over the course of a Saturday night, for example).
To put this in context, $2500 represents 3.5 months of rent for me and slightly more than my bi-weekly pay-cheque. Basically, more than two weeks of my working year went towards paying for my alcohol consumption.
I've never thought of myself as having a drinking issue per se, but I am appalled at how much money is being flushed down the drain on alcohol. In order to understand how this can happen, keep in mind that I live in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada and due to alcohol taxes, a pint of beer at a bar will, after the additional application of sales tax and the socially mandatory 15% tip, often cost around $8-$10. Wine and cocktails will easily run in the $12-$16 range at many bars. Even purchasing from your local government-run liquor stores, while a much better deal than drinking out, can result in costs that would shock the average American or European Mustachian.
So, without further ado, my goal is to immediately slash my alcohol spend by 75% and get my total 2017 spend on booze, not including gifts and alcohol used solely for cooking, down to $625 CDN. Even this is quite a high figure based on the amounts suggested by MMM and I am hoping to exceed this goal. In order to accomplish this I see three main avenues:
- Stop drinking as much. Easier said than done given that I am a 26 year old lawyer and much of my social life seems to revolve around bars and drinking.
- Slash the amount of drinking I do in bars if I am doing to drink.
- Make my own alcohol. I recently read Mr. Frugal Toque's guide to fine Canadian Wine-Making and ordered a batch from the same DIY wine-making facility he reviewed.