The statistics are emphatic; the younger generation get no kick from champagne. Mere alcohol doesn’t thrill them at all. Under 25s are swearing off the stuff in such numbers that 27pc of them now describe themselves as teetotal (which for the first time makes them as sober as the elderly in society)!
But while you can practically hear livers around the country squeaking (or should that be oozing?) with relief, one consequence is what it’s doing to the stag do. Long trumpeted as the zenith of a man’s alcohol consumption, it’s a brave new world where stag dos are less concerned with Jägerbombs and more concerned with, well what? How do you celebrate the end of bachelorhood if not with a boozy do?
The other thing to bear in mind for a sober stag do is that for many of the activities that stags typically want to do, you would have to be sober anyway.”
Ahh yes, the small print. The disclaimers and End User Licence Agreements that you usually cast a glance at and sign regardless of what you think they might say. For many of the classic stag activities such as Mud Buggies, Go-karting, and Clay Pigeon shooting, you should not be drinking. So a totally sober stag do means that a wider field of activities are open to you.
We definitely see a correlation between the sober stag dos choosing more energetic events like Mud Buggies and Paintballing! You go out in the county side, blast each other with paintballs and take the Mud Buggies for a swing round the muddy terrains and create some brilliant memories for the whole party – and given that you’re sober, they’re moments that you’ll actually remember.
It’s crucial that the entire stag party understands the etiquette of a teetotal bash. The first rule is don’t complain. If the groom asks that you all refrain from drinking then take it as a test of your character. If you’re finding it really difficult to imagine a big weekend without the company of Jack Daniels, it’s probably time to ask yourself some searching questions about your own relationship with alcohol.
The second rule is to use the occasion to celebrate your friend. If you’ve been asked on their stag do then presumably you know them and, hopefully, like them. This could be a great opportunity to consider what life is like from their point of view. When so much of our culture’s socialising is built around drinking, perhaps they just want one weekend where their role isn’t too slowly watch their friends morph into stupider versions of themselves.
Finally, don’t assume that just because you’re not drinking that you can’t “go large”, as the saying goes. The usual stag fare of eating, dancing, laughing and jokes are all still very much on the menu. You shouldn’t associate sober with being boring! We know from our sober stags that they still manage to prank the groom, enjoy themselves and have a great time. You’d be surprised how many men will put on a neon green mankini just for a laugh without needing the aid of rum.
One thing that’s evident from the teetotal parties we have is that they tend to spend more on the accommodation and restaurant choices we offer. Largely, this is because the money that they save on not drinking is put into a really good meal or more comfortable surroundings.
Think happy thoughts about your liver and your wallet. And if you’re really struggling then load up on a few boxes of liqueur chocolates!