A bar crawl is one of the most enjoyable ways to spend time with friends, make new ones and experience a considerable chunk of a city’s nightlife. It is also littered with social, physical and mental pitfalls which can potentially cut yours or your friends’ night short (after having potentially embarrassed yourself in front of a group of strangers).
To make sure you have a great, socially-awkward-free, fun night next time you embark on a bar crawl, read through our definitive Bar Crawl Etiquette list.
Ease Yourself In
Some reps and guides like to play drinking games to get everyone involved early which is great. However, there is always at least one person that takes this as a cue to take centre stage and often ends up annoying a lot of people or getting way too drunk too early. Don’t be that person.
Don’t Be Shy
The whole point of attending an organised bar crawl is for you and your friends to meet new people along the way. Sitting in your group of friends in a dark corner all night ignoring the rest of the people on the crawl makes everyone else wonder why you came along at all.
Don’t Go For Food During The Crawl
Food is vital in sustaining an enjoyable bar crawl, so make sure you get plenty of food before hand. Everyone has a friend who disappears half way through a night out to get a kebab and will be “back in 10 minutes” yet never actually returns. Don’t get Hangry and disappear.
Stick To The Dress Code
Many bar crawls either provide a specially designed T-shirt or ask that you arrive in fancy dress of some sort, so go along with it. Turning up in a suit when everyone else is in a bar crawl T-shirt and jeans will leave you sticking out for all the wrong reasons. Special event pub crawls such as Halloween and St Patrick’s Day are perfect opportunities for a bit of fancy dress. A good pub crawl organiser will usually have some extra bits to transform guests that didn’t have the time to dress up.
Keep To The Schedule
Obviously no one expects bar crawls to run on time to the second; with drinks flowing and fun being had time can go a bit astray. That being said your guide will have a plan, so listen to them. Don’t hang around for an extra drink “because you like this bar”, keep moving and enjoy the ride.
Trust Your Guide
Whether you have spent many evenings in the city your crawl is based, or it is your first time visiting, you have to trust the judgement of the guide. Don’t spend the evening complaining about where you’d have gone instead, just enjoy it as it comes.
The majority of bars and pubs accept card payments these days, but not all (and if they do there might be a minimum spend). Don’t hold up the crawl or at the very least your friends while you have to run to find the nearest cash machine to buy a £1 shot, just bring cash.
Leave No-One Behind
Not matter how much you watch your own back, one of the group will eventually fall ill to the hazards of alcohol. Do your best to spot this early, get them a water or keep them off the booze for one round so that everyone can be crossing the finish line together.
Bring Your Dancing Shoes
Whether you can dance or not, there’s no denying that after a few drinks, there is something your favourite song does to you which makes you move in very visually interesting ways. A few drinks in and lots of people will be up and dancing, so don’t be shy, get involved. 90% of us can’t dance anyway, that’s the fun part.
Stick To The Drinks List
Most bar crawls will have a set drinks list planned for the evening, outlining each drink in each bar. This is a great bonding tool between those of you who don’t know each other. The drinks are also chosen to make it manageable, so don’t drink too many more alongside.
When There’s No List, Take It Steady
Whether its your first pub crawl or your 100th, choosing the right drinks is vital in surviving the whole night. If there are 9 bars, it would be unwise to drink large glasses of wine all the way (that’s three bottles), instead go for smaller beers, ales and single spirit and mixers.
Sticking to these definitive bar crawl principles will almost certainly ensure you have a fun filled evening without the worry of upsetting anyone or feeling too worse for wear. If this has got you pumped up for for a bar crawl, then come and check out our top-rated on TripAdvisor London bar crawls here.