Get a Free Tow Home This New Year's Instead of Leaving Your Car at the Bar (Or Driving, You Drunk Fool)
Assuming that you're not going to knit a sweater and celebrate New Year's Eve with Ryan Seacrest and Jenny McCarthy on ABC's "New Year's Rockin' Eve," it's a pretty safe bet to say that you're probably going to consume alcohol—a considerable amount of alcohol.
Similar to the Red Sox locker room scene after their 2013 World Series win, the bubbly will flow across the world—a common tradition when ringing in the new year. While there's no shame in exuberantly over-celebrating what Time Magazine lists as the "Number 1 Drunkest Holiday," the safety of yourself and others should be greatly taken into consideration.
When the night begins to unravel and people head home, they tend get behind the wheel and drive blitzed out of their minds. New Year's Eve statistically has one of the largest number of drunk driving arrests and fatalities out of any day of the year.
Not driving to where you're going to drink would obviously be your best bet on avoiding any trouble, but shit happens, so what can you do if you find yourself drunk with the keys to your car in your hand?
As part of their fight against drunk driving, AAA offers a "Safe Ride Program" for Christmas, New Year's Eve, and other holidays. Best of all, it's free and without membership. While it's not available in every state across the U.S., it does provide a useful service for those that find themselves in the potential situation of driving while under the influence.
Currently, the Safe Ride Program is available statewide in Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, and Utah, as well as in Alabama where it's referred to alternatively as "Tow-for-Life," and Florida, Georgia, and Tennessee where it's called "Tow-to-Go."
Other states are offered the service is specific local areas, so make sure to check out the full list on AAA's website, and call your local branch for more local information about the program.
Whether you're a AAA member or not, call 800-222-4357 (800-AAA-HELP) to receive a free tow home of up to ten miles. AAA offers this free service from 6 p.m. on December 31st to 6:00 a.m. on January 1st. I recommend you add this to your speed dial list, because if you're too drunk to drive, you're probably too drunk to remember something as simple as "AAA-HELP."
If you're in Florida, Georgia, or Tennessee, program the number 855-286-9246 into your phone for Tow-to-Go. And if you forget, that would be 855-2TOW2GO.
From there, you'll receive a one-way ride home, along with your vehicle. If you have any passengers with you, they can be taken, but only if there's room inside the tow truck at the drivers discretion. In some states, it's illegal to ride in a towed vehicle, but in most cases it violates the insurance rules of the tow truck company. Most tow trucks can squeeze in 2 people in their cab.
AAA advises to call and check if the service is available in your area before you go out get drunk, that way you can plan accordingly. Also, if the program doesn't exist where you live, you can check out this comprehensive AAA list of alternatives to getting home safe.
If this all seems like too much to deal with, plan on sleeping over somewhere, taking a taxi (Lyft and Uber will probably be expensive), getting a designated driver, or not drinking at all. But really, you're probably going to drink—so be safe and don't drink and drive.