Alcohol and weed are two of the most popular recreational drugs in the world.
In last year’s Global Drugs Survey, of the 7,000 participants, 48 per cent reported using cannabis in the last 12 months, and 90 per cent said they had drank alcohol. This means more than half of participants like to have a drink and a smoke. However, the study didn’t tell us how much of our hard-earned cash we spend on either liquor or weed, so here we go.
How much weed we smoke, and how much it costs us
Drugscope found the most common type of cannabis used in England and Wales is skunk, as opposed to hash (resin), which has seen a sharp decline in use since many people started growing their own weed in 2005. In their research, the charity found the average price of a quarter-ounce (7g) of UK skunk is £50.
The charity can also help us out with narrowing down how much people smoke. Researchers found ‘regular users might consume one-eighth of an ounce a week; while heavy and regular cannabis users might use that amount in a day’. So that’s between 3.5g (£25) and 24.5g (£175) per week, depending on whether said smoker is a light or heavy user. This means a light smoker could spend as much as £1,300 a year on their habit, and a heavy smoker could rack up a tab of £9,100. Yes, you read that correctly.
So that’s weed. Here’s what booze is setting us back
As a nation, alcohol, along with caffeine, is one of our top vices. Basically, we fucking love to drink. Macmillan Cancer Support estimates that every British adult spends an average of £787 a year on alcohol, an extra £100 (£886) for those lucky enough to live in London.
How it all weighs up (no pun intended…)
The above stats say a weed habit is going to set you back substantially more than the odd tipple – or even a raging drink problem, apparently. This appears to be regardless of whether you are someone who enjoys a couple of tokes at a party, or are a fully-fledged gang addict who only takes a break from the bong to proclaim your love of purple haze.
It’s not an exact science
Although these figures may give us some insight into the financial burden of using these recreational drugs, we have to take them with a pinch of salt. Because smoking weed is still illegal in the UK, it’s pretty tricky to get reliable data on the average amount users consume, as the legal stigma forces the activity underground. The data also does not take into account other costs associated with using these drugs, such as taxis, kebabs, Rizla, grinders, etc. Similarly, the figures don’t take into account people who grow weed or brew their own booze, and are obviously spending far less than the average customer. And, of course, people spend varying amounts on recreational drugs from week to week. Additionally, both drugs impair your memory, making it difficult to even know how much you’ve spent yourself. Exactly how many units did you consume last weekend? Thought so.
Money isn’t everything
So we seem to have debunked the idea that weed is the cheaper habit. Smoking weed and boozing are both pretty expensive pastimes, and that’s not even thinking about what those 10 pints last Friday did to your liver, or how you were scared to leave the house after getting through the last of that £20 bag last weekend.
If you’re struggling with an addiction, call addaction on 020 7251 5860.