What is Dry January?

Dry January is the annual movement through which millions of people give up alcohol for the month of January. It is run by the charity Alcohol Change UK.

The rules

  1. No alcohol from when you wake up on New Year's Day until 1 February.

... And that's all!

We don't sell Golden Tickets to give you a day off. If you decide to have a drink, that's totally up to you. A drier January is still something to be proud of, and your body will thank you!

But if you can make it through the month alcohol-free, you'll get bigger benefits. The biggest benefit of all is that you'll see you don't need alcohol to have fun, go out, stay in, relax or do anything else you might associate with drinking. And knowing that will help you take control of your drinking year-round.

Why do Dry January?

Taking part in Dry January is a chance to ditch the hangover, reduce the waistline, and save some serious money by giving up alcohol for 31 days. Read more about why doing Dry January is a good idea.

But does it work?

Yes! 72% of people who do Dry January are still drinking less riskily six months later (according to the alcohol AUDIT, a World Health Organisation measure of risky drinking). Giving your body a break from booze for January is pretty good for it, but Dry January helps people cut down longer term too, and that has so many more benefits. You can read the published paper on Voluntary Temporary Abstinence From Alcohol During “Dry January” and Subsequent Alcohol Use.

Is Dry January for charity?

First and foremost, Dry January is for YOU. It's your chance to give booze a break. Your chance for better skin, more energy, a healthier body, better sleep and a whole load more benefits to boot.

Dry January is run by the charity Alcohol Change UK. We started Dry January because:

  • A month off is a great chance to get us all thinking about our drinking, so we can make healthier and happier decisions when it comes to alcohol year-round.
  • Dry January is an opportunity to make not drinking, whether for an evening, a month or longer, feel more normal. Because many of us feel under pressure to drink, or to drink more than we want to, and we think it would be better if everyone had more choice.

Lots of people who do Dry January find that they save money by not drinking, and you might decide to donate some of what you save to Alcohol Change UK, to support our work to reduce the harm caused by alcohol in the UK. Every day 20 people in the UK die as a result of their drinking, and the impact of alcohol doesn't stop there - it affects families, communities, and in fact our whole society. Find out more about our work.

You can also choose to get sponsored by your family and friends for your Dry January, in support of us and one of our partner charities - that might give you some extra motivation to stay alcohol-free for the full month!

What are you waiting for?

Sign up now!