21st Birthdays


Your 21st birthday is a major milestone in your life. Like many young adults, you may want to celebrate it with some alcoholic drinks. Whether this is your first time drinking alcohol or not, utilize these tips to have a safe and memorable 21st birthday.


If you choose to drink, please drink responsibly.

  • Set a limit on the number of alcoholic drinks

  • Treat yourself to a nice birthday meal with protein before you start drinking

  • Drink plenty of water
    (during and after drinking alcohol)

  • Alternate between alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks

  • Track the number of drinks you consume

  • Make your own drinks or watch them being made

  • Pace your drinks to about one alcoholic drink per hour

  • Have a plan to get home safely

  • Use a sober designated driver to get home

  • Stay with a group ("buddy system")

  • Don't feel pressured to play drinking games or drink more than you'd like - it's your birthday, so you do you!

  • Slow down, enjoy all 1,440 minutes of your birthday

Remember, drinking alcohol does not have to be the main event at your 21st birthday. There are plenty of ways to celebrate your birthday that don't include alcohol.

Happy 21st Birthday from Health Promotion and Wellness! 

If you are having any difficulties or concerns, consider contacting the professionals at Student Counseling Services. For immediate help or safety concerns, call the UChicago Police at 773.702.8181. Click here to find more important phone numbers.