Drink Spiking - Students
Advice to stay safer in the night time economy and at house parties
Top tips when going out to clubs and bars
The recent spate of drink spiking and injecting and extensive media coverage has heightened awareness of the risk, especially to young
women going out, and not surprisingly has made many anxious and nervous. A few things can really help someone stay protected and
feel more confident in the night time economy including:
• choosing well run venues with door staff and CCTV
• staying with trusted friends, and looking out for each other
• being careful not to drink too much as this can make us more vulnerable to others as we are less aware of what is going on.
• if on a new date, choosing a well lit, well supervised and public/central setting.
Letting someone else know exactly what your plans are – and inform them if they change. Having a phone locator such as
find my friends/snap chat is a great way for those close to know where you are.
• if you want to accept a drink from a someone you don’t know well, go to the bar and take the drink from the server, so
there is no opportunity for spiking.
• be wary if a stranger buys you a drink and it’s not the type of drink you requested.
• don’t take your eyes off your drink. If you have to leave the table (to go to the toilet, for example), ask a friend to watch over the
• buy drinks that come in bottles with screw top lids. Carry the bottle in your bag when you go to the toilet or dance. Alternatively,
you could bring drinks covers/ bottle stoppers to the venue.
• don’t consume your drink if you think it may have been spiked. Discuss your concerns with the manager or host.
Advice for House parties
Most people presume that drink spiking will happen to young women in bars and clubs, which indeed in many cases it does, but our
research has shown that 35% of drink spiking takes place at private parties – ahead of nightclubs at 28% – so we do need to keep our
wits about us where ever we choose to party.
At house parties as we’re amongst friends our guard is more likely to be down and we’re less likely to keep a close eye on our drinks. Drink spiking predators choose house parties as people are likely to be more relaxed and there’s no CCTV either – so just a caution – stay aware, keep an eye on your mates, get them to look out for you, and don’t drink too much as this does make you more vulnerable to others.
Prior to going out, make a plan for how to get home. Keeping hydrated by drinking plenty of water or by alternating any alcoholic drinks with something alcohol-free and eating before going out or during the evening are great ways to help stay in control and to be able to keep a careful eye on drinks.
See details of surveys by the Alcohol Education Trust and other organisations