Alcohol advice and support
Read our advice on enjoying alcohol responsibly and where to get support if you need it.
Research has shown that some people have been drinking more during COVID-19 lockdowns - this can be due to anxiety or stress. Our advice is to drink sensibly to prevent the potentially harmful effects on your mental and physical health, as well as relationships and your studies.
While we all spend more time at home, remember that you should never feel pressured to drink if you don’t want to, or to fit in. It’s your choice. There are so many other ways to socialise and enjoy time with friends that don’t involve drinking alcohol.
You should respect the people you live with and their choices about drinking as well as being mindful not to disturb flatmates and neighbours.
Knowing your limits, when to stop and letting your friends know when they need to stop can be a good way to protect yourself and your friends. Our Be a Mate campaign aims to support you to look out for one another when drinking. Find out more.
How much is too much?
The NHS recommends adults should consume no more than 14 ‘units’ of alcohol per week on a regular basis to keep health risks to a low level.
Download an infographic showing alcohol units for popular drinks.
|Type of drink||Number of alcohol units|
|Single small shot of spirits (25ml, ABV* 40%)||1 unit|
| Alcopop (275ml, ABV 5.5%)
| Small glass of wine (125ml, ABV 12%)
| Standard glass of wine (175ml, ABV 12%)
| Large glass of wine (250ml, ABV 12%)
| Bottle of lager/beer/cider (330ml, ABV 5%)
| Can of lager/beer/cider (440ml, ABV 5.5%)
| Pint of lower strength lager/beer/cider (ABV 3.6%)
| Pint of higher strength lager/beer/cider (ABV 5.2%)
*AVB = Alcohol by Volume. This is used to measure the alcohol content in different alcoholic drinks.
Please see our Drugs & Alcohol Policy.
How can I stay below the recommended guidelines?
Here are our tips for cutting down your alcohol intake before and during a night out:
- When pouring spirits at home, use a lined glass or standard shot glass to measure your portion
- Keep track of how many units you’re drinking and set aside specific ‘drink free days’ each week
- Consider swapping your usual drink for a smaller or lower strength option
- Try an alcohol-free beer or 0% spirit (available in most supermarkets and at many of our bars on campus)
- Alternate alcoholic drinks with water or soft drinks
Where can I find support?
If you are concerned about how much you’re drinking, or worried for a friend, contact our Student Welfare Team who will be able to provide further advice about where to access specific support.
You can also make an appointment with your GP for medical advice. It’s important to be honest with them about how much you’re regularly drinking so work out your average weekly unit intake to share with them.
RUSU’s Advice Service also offer free and confidential support for all students.