Go home, credit card — you're drunk.
Nearly half of American adults who drink regularly admitted to shopping while under the influence — and they dropped $448 on average last year, according to a new survey from Finder. That's a looooot of drunk pizza runs.
Among the tipsy shoppers, 60% said they were most likely to drop drunk money on food. (I mean, who hasn't needed a late-night order of cheese fries?) The next most common categories for drunk shopping include clothes and shoes, and then gambling.
To be fair, one-click checkout has made it all too easy to overspend — even more so when your drunk self wants to treat your sober self to the latest Sephora drop. But these sobering numbers might make you ease up. Drunk-buying last year more than doubled the previous year's $206-per-person average. That doesn't include the cost of getting drunk to begin with — more than $3,000 a year for the average millennial and about $1,900 for the average Gen Xer.
"Imbibing gives me the confidence to confront my finances!" you might say. Sure, some people out there have paid off credit card debt or upped their 401(k) contribution with the help of liquid courage. But even "good" money decisions made while drunk might not be for the best. Take, for example, one staffer's friend-of-a-friend who overpaid her student loans while drinking one night — only to wake up and realize she had no money for daily expenses until her next paycheck.
If you're regularly waking up to a (financial) hangover, consider these tips.
Delete shopping apps from your phone. Online buys tend to be more indulgent when people shop using a touchscreen, like a phone or tablet, found a recent study. To make it harder to overspend, remove the temptation by deleting these apps from your phone. If that feels like overkill, tools like App Detox or Flipd can help you restrict the time you spend on certain apps, or lock your phone completely during a set period of time (say, 3 a.m. to 5 a.m. on Saturday). There'll be no drunk splurges *or* drunk texts.
Shop retailers with a generous return policy. OK, so maybe you made it to your computer and found out your favorite store is having a FLASH SALE. Avoid buyer's remorse by shopping with stores that have a good return policy — bonus if they have free shipping, too.
Know your one-number budget. Sometimes, you just want to treat yourself. And if it fits within your budget, you can do so knowing your other financial priorities are taken care of. Having one number to track how much you can spend in a week can be the easy reminder you need to know, drunk or otherwise, whether that purchase is within reason.