Simply put, a DUI can wreak havoc on your life, especially during the holidays. The potential for jail time, fines, suspension and everything else that comes with a DUI are an easy way to spoil anytime of year, including the holidays. However, as will all social gatherings and celebrations, alcohol is typically a given. Fortunately, there is a way that you can not only enjoy yourself, but take the worries of getting home safely out of the equation. Designated driver services can do just that and can even get your car home as well.
How do Designated Driver Services Work?
There are quite a few different services available that are offered by various commercial business as well as non-profit organizations. Each one works a little differently and most are little to no charge.
- Shuttles- Some companies will allow you to schedule a shuttle to come and pick you up. While this doesn’t get your car home, it’s a great way for you and your friends to enjoy an evening without the concern of how to get home.
- The “Team Lift” Approach- This simple and effective approach sends two drivers to your location. One drives you and your vehicle home while the other follows behind in a separate car. This is a great option if you don’t want to have to retrieve your car the next day.
- The Scooter- Another option is your designated driver comes to your location on a compact, collapsible scooter. The scooter is then stored in your trunk as the driver takes you and your car home. Afterwards the designated driver can then use the scooter to head to the next location.
- Tipsy Tow- This is a service offered by AAA that sends a tow truck driver to your location and tows your car home for you. Yet another way to make sure that both you and your car make it home in one piece.
Beware, Not all Services are Always Available
While these services are a great way to avoid a DUI, it’s important that you check to make sure that it’s available. Many Designated Driving services only operate during limited weekend hours and the holidays (New Years Eve especially) and not all services are available everywhere. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has put together a list of all designated driver services. Before you go, make sure to check and see what providers are available in your area and understand how their services work.
DUIs are a serious matter that can impact you for the rest of your life. Not only are you putting others at risk when you get behind the wheel, but yourself as well. If you’re planning on going out, and there aren’t any services available, call a taxi. While it might cost more than a designated driver service (even with a tip for the driver, which is encouraged) it’s still nothing compared to the costs of being arrested for driving under the influence. Don’t take any chances, especially when you don’t need to. Use a designated driver and forget the stress of making it home safe when you go out, whether it with family over the holidays or friends any time of the year.
+Andrew is one of the leading DUI and criminal defense attorneys in both the state of Maryland and the District of Columbia. On his law blog about Maryland DUI law, has numerous videos on the subject and has been asked to appear on national television to offer his legal opinion on high-profile criminal cases.