Saving money on summer beverages

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - The average American spends $600 per year on alcohol and some people spend closer to $6,000!

Whatever amount you may consume, there are many ways to save money, aside from just cutting down on your consumption.

There are a variety of ways to buy smart. We spoke to the experts at Monarch  Beverage to hear their tips. The first tip has to do with saving money when buying wine.

“A lot of times stores will offer deals if you buy in bulk and it doesn’t have to be that much.  For example, if you buy six bottles of wine, many stores will give you 10 to 15% off,” said Gina Apple, department manager customer service for Monarch.

Another helpful tip is something you may have noticed during the recent Memorial Day weekend. Right before holidays, stores will offer specials to get you inside.  That will also apply for the upcoming July 4 celebrations.

Here’s another way to save when talking about wine: don't be a snob and consider the box.  Box wines are growing in popularity as their quality can be on par with a bottle of the same wine.  It can save you big money, especially if you're planning a wedding!

“Maybe the bartender at your wedding can put some bottles of wine up for display so guests can know what's being served. But then put the boxed wine underneath for the bartender to serve out of.  They love it because it's much more efficient, and it's easier,” said Apple.

Here’s some savings advice most people don’t know about:  you can often get the exact same wine in a bottle or box and it's much less less expensive in a box!  A typical bottle of wine holds 750 milliliters.  From the 750 ml bottle, you’ll get about five glasses of wine.  The bigger box sells for about the same cost, but you'll get 20 glasses out of it--four times the amount of wine for the same price. The boxed wine will also last longer; you'll get about 30 days out of it as opposed to three days for an open bottle.

Now, let's talk about buying beer and saving money on that.  If you're planning a party, consider getting a keg.

“It can be a huge savings. For example, half kegs are 15.5 gallons which equals the same as 165 12-ounce bottles of beer.  The cost of Miller Lite is about $103 in the keg.  Cases of beer for an equal amount cost $150 bucks,” said Apple.

That's almost a $50 savings. If you don't need that much beer for your gathering, there are smaller keg sizes which will also net you some hefty savings.  When it comes to buying wine, size also matters.  Buying larger format wines like a 1.5 liter saves you money and still fits in your fridge. For example, a regular 750 ml bottle of one make of Moscato is $6.  The 1.5 liter is double the size but it’s not double the price at only $9.66.

Another great way to save money: if you're out, ask for the specials and try water between drinks.

“It's a good idea, it’s socially responsible and it keeps you hydrated, and drinking water is certainly a good way to cut down on the amount of beverages you have."