The government’s plans to increase the minimum alcohol prices, I think, are a waste of time. How many of you can honestly say that an increase in the price will make you think again before making your purchase? I doubt very many of you.
As far as I can see, on a night out there are two approaches to spending. One: making sure you get paralytic no matter how much it costs you and flashing your card (if you can still see straight) is your back up. Two: the more sensible approach, only taking money that you are willing to spend and seeing how far it gets you. In both circumstances the cost per unit is not a factor.
This won’t have an impact on people binge drinking or the feeling of invincibility that leads to the A&E visits. This could mark the end for pound land at Tap and Tin on a Monday or Casinos student nights at £1.40 a shot on a Thursday, but pre drinking will be even more commonplace than it already is in student’s halls.
It will also mean other necessities will be forgotten, as one student said- I’ll have to stop buying food then. Although this was said in humour, it could be an unfortunate reality. If anything the plans are condemning students to turning to hunger and hygiene strikes – costing the NHS even more.
As for the more hard core alcoholics, it will only cost families more heartbreak as people spend more on feeding their addiction than paying for school trips or the electricity bill. I see that the government may think this initiative will stop people drinking and have a positive effect, but I don't think it's that simple. People don't think that logically.
The change of prices will not change the mind set of people when they want a drink and this is the issue that needs to be addressed. Government predictions, according to the Independent, suggest that the change could reduce alcohol consumption by 3.3% leading to 24,000 fewer hospital admissions and 700 fewer alcohol-linked deaths. This is on the assumption that the price increase will stop people from drinking. This is not a guarantee.