Everyone has heard a spring break horror story. Don’t be one of those statistics this year. Instead, play it safe, avoid peer pressure and have fun. The best spring break memories are the times you spend with friends and the time spent having adventures you can’t have at home. Learn how to have a safe, fun spring break.
Instead of arriving at your destination with nothing to do, create a busy itinerary. You’ve been studying for weeks. This is your chance to let loose. Go on hikes, rent water crafts or try a new activity you’ve never done before. Visit local attractions and keep yourself busy. You’ll be less likely to fall into a habit of binge drinking on your vacation if you have plenty of fun things to do.
Travel with safe friends
The best way to avoid peer pressure is to surround yourself with peers who respect you and those you admire. Ditch the friends who do things that make you uncomfortable and make you feel bad about yourself. On vacation, it’s more important than ever to be with people you trust and enjoy hanging out with.
Be street smart
Travel in groups and never go somewhere with a stranger. Keep your identification and health insurance on you and keep an copy of your driver’s license and passport somewhere safe. Make sure someone knows where you are at all times, and use a system of checking in with your friends so that everyone is accounted for. Avoid going to someone’s residence if you’ve just met them, even if you’re in a group.
Don’t binge drink
According to the CDC, about 90 percent of the alcohol consumed by youth under the age of 21 in the United States is in the form of binge drinking. Binge drinking can lead to violence, injury, alcohol poisoning and risky sexual behaviors. During spring break, don’t let this risky action put you and your friends in danger. The CDC also states that in 2008, there were approximately 190,000 emergency rooms visits by people under 21 for injuries and other conditions linked to alcohol. Think about how much you’ve been looking forward to your break and the chance to get away and relax, not end up in the hospital.
The LiveFree! Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition is a coalition of community advocates who strive to address substance abuse in Pinellas County. To see how you can get involved in this cause to help make our community a better place, visit us online.