How Much Could You Save If You Quit Drinking?

When you want to save money, you need to look at every aspect of your life and spot any unnecessary spending. Alcohol spending is a great choice to cut out or at least minimise, since for most people it’s not a must-have item – it’s just a small luxury to enjoy every now and then.

But are the savings really that big? How much does alcohol cost and how much money could be saved by not drinking? Let’s discuss.

The Average Cost of Drinking

The Australian Bureau of Statistics reported that in 2015-2016, the average Australian household was spending $32 a week on alcoholic beverages. That’s $32 that could be going into savings each week or that could be spent on the occasional splurge meal.

Don’t forget that if you’re someone who goes out to drink at clubs and pubs more than the average person, your costs will be higher still. Consider how much a single drink costs on a night out and come up with your own average weekly spending on alcohol.

Seeing friends and spending time with them is great, but try planning cheaper activities that will keep you all just as entertained without straining anyone’s budget.

The Other Costs of Drinking

A night out will cost you money as you buy yourself drinks, but don’t forget that there are other costs too. There’s the cover fee that some venues will charge, the hot chips and kebabs you crave throughout the night, the rideshare home, the expensive hangover meal the next day… it all adds up. The money you spend on alcohol isn’t the only money you could save if you quit drinking.

Overpriced Events

Putting on some fancy new duds and going to an event is exciting but costly, especially for drinkers. Sporting events, Oktoberfest events, National Beer Day or National Wine Day events, and festivals will all overcharge you for your drinks. While some of these events aren’t something teetotallers will enjoy (National Wine Day isn’t that fun without a glass of wine), some of them can be enjoyed without a drink, which can save you a lot of money.

What You Could Purchase Instead

For those already trying to build savings, the money saved by not drinking is already worth it. But if you’re not sure if it’s worth it, consider what else you could spend your money on.

If you’re considering quitting drinking to get healthier, the money you save could fund your gym membership. You could put the funds towards a holiday. You could relax with a massage and address your aching back instead of ignoring it. You could do whatever you like if you quit drinking and save money.

If you’re saving for an investment and need a quick boost, a short-term loan might be able to help you out.

Everything in Moderation

With everything considered, quitting alcohol entirely isn’t the solution that works for everyone. A lot of people still enjoy a glass of wine at fancy dinners with family or a beer at a celebratory afternoon with friends.

What it comes down to is cutting down and enjoying alcohol in moderation. Even if you don’t cut down 100% of your alcohol spending, you can cut down some of it. Either drink less in general or consider going out less and hosting friends and drinking at home instead; that way, you’re paying a much lower price for the same drinks.

Disclaimer: Please be aware that Cigno Loans’ articles do not replace advice from an accountant or financial advisor. All information provided is intended to be used as a guide only, as it does not take into account your personal financial situation or needs. If you require assistance, it is recommended that you consult a licensed financial or tax advisor.


Ordered by the Federal Court of Australia

The Federal Court of Australia has found that Cigno Australia Pty Ltd (Cigno Australia) and BSF Solutions Pty Ltd (BSF Solutions) have breached the law by engaging in unlicensed credit activity and charging prohibited fees.

In the period from July 2022 to 3 October 2023, over 100,000 consumers have been lent a total of $34 million, and charged fees of over $70 million, under the ‘No Upfront Charge Loan Model’ operated by BSF Solutions and Cigno Australia. At no time has either BSF Solutions or Cigno Australia held an Australian Credit Licence.

The Court also found that Mark Swanepoel (director of Cigno Australia) and Brenton James Harrison (director of BSF Solutions) were involved in these breaches of the law.

With effect from 24 May 2024, the Court has granted permanent injunctions preventing Cigno Australia and BSF Solutions from:

  • demanding, receiving or accepting fees or charges, including amounts of loan principal, from consumers in relation to credit provided under the ‘No Upfront Charge Model’; and
  • engaging in further credit activity pursuant to the ‘No Upfront Charge Loan Model’, including by entering into new agreements with consumers, for so long as they do not hold an Australian Credit Licence.

Cigno Australia was ordered by the Court to, by 5th July 2024, send written communications to consumers who between July 2022 and December 2022 entered into agreements with Cigno Australia and BSF Solutions under the ‘No Upfront Charge Loan Model’.

The Court will later determine whether (among other things) Cigno Australia and Mark Swanepoel ought to pay a pecuniary penalty in respect of this conduct, and whether Mark Swanepoel should be restrained from carrying on a business engaging in credit activity.

Cigno Australia, BSF Solutions, Mr Swanepoel and Mr Harrison intend to appeal the decision of the Court and have filed an application for leave to appeal. If the appeal is successful, some or all of the orders of the Federal Court of Australia may be set aside.

Where can you get more information?

Where to go for further support

You can access legal advice in your state at: Free legal advice –

If you are experiencing trouble with debt, or money worries in general, contact:

  • the National Debt Helpline on 1800 007 007 or online chat (9:30am to 4.30pm, Monday to Friday).

If you need someone to talk to, contact:

  • Lifeline on 13 11 14 (24 hours) or their crisis support online chat or
  • Beyond Blue on 1300 22 46 36 (24 hours) or their webchat