Want 2019 to be great? Then don’t let it get off to a bad start. A DUI is no way to begin the year. Neither is a car crash. Keep your celebrations safe by planning your strategy ahead of time.

Know your limits – and the law.

Think you’re safe to drive after a couple of drinks? Maybe not.

To estimate your blood alcohol content (BAC), you can use the BAC Calculator at HealthStatus. Understand, however, that this is just a rough estimate. Your actual BAC depends on a lot of factors, including how strong the drinks are, your body weight and what you’ve had to eat.

You could also be a hazard behind the wheel with a BAC below .08, the legal limit in most states. The NHTSA states that with a BAC of .02, there can be a decline in visual functions and a decline in the ability to perform two actions at once. With a BAC of .05, people may experience reduced coordination, a reduced ability to track moving objects difficult steering, and a reduced response to emergency driving situations.

Alcohol isn’t the only substance that can make you a hazard behind the wheel. Drugs, whether they’re illicit, prescription or over the counter, can also impair your ability to drive safely. When combined with alcohol, the effects can be exacerbated. If you’re taking medications, check the warning labels to see if they cause drowsiness or should not be combined with alcohol.

Get a sober ride home.

Don’t try to push the limits of the law, or of your safety. If your plans to ring in the new year involve alcohol, arrange for a sober ride home. There are a few ways to do this.

Strategy One: Pick a designated driver in your group. If you don’t have one, consider volunteering for the role. That way, you won’t start the new year with a hangover.

Strategy Two: Plan on taking a bus, taxi, Uber or Lyft home. Budget this expense into your celebration plans—and if you hate spending money this way, remember that it’s far less than what you’d pay for a DUI or crash.

Strategy Three: Take advantage of local programs. Some areas have programs to help people get a safe ride home during the holidays.

Let’s get 2019 off to a good start. Keep your celebrations safe and your ride home sober. Happy New Year from all of us at Jupiter Auto Insurance!