Drinkaware Monitor 2022

Every year Drinkaware commissions a survey to track and understand the nation’s drinking. In 2022, we looked at the impact of alcohol that extends beyond the drinker – to family, friends, co-workers, and strangers.


The harm originating from alcohol extends beyond the drinker – to family, friends, co-workers, and strangers. Our 2022 Monitor aimed to further understand this impact. We wanted to identify and understand the range and magnitude of harms caused by, or associated with, someone else’s drinking.

In addition, we wanted to explore the clustering of other health-related behaviours (such as illicit drug use, smoking, and gambling), to identify where in society this clustering occurs. 


Key findings

There has been no significant change in how often UK adults drink alcohol or the amount of alcohol being consumed in a typical day/week since 2021
  • But the number of UK drinkers who are binge drinking is rising, particularly amongst younger adults
  • Understanding of government low risk drinking guidelines is low, but those who understand the guidelines do not necessarily drink less alcohol
The drinking of other people is having a negative impact on many UK adults
  • Three in ten UK adults are concerned about someone else's drinking
  • The drinking of a partner, close friend or relative is most likely to have a negative impact when they regularly drink to excess
Drinking behaviours are interdependent with other factors

The research identified that lifestage, social life, people around you and demographics influence drinking habits and that drinking habits have an impact on health and life satisfaction, other risky behaviours and the people around you.

View the UK report below or download it. You can also view findings for Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland in our individual nation reports or download them below.

For more information on research objectives, survey questions and methodology, see the tabs at the bottom of this page. Alternatively, download our technical report.

Research Information

Interested researchers who wish to conduct independent analysis of our Monitor data are welcome to contact the research team at research@drinkaware.co.uk.  



The main objectives of the survey research were to:
  • Provide an overview of drinking behaviour in the UK, measuring frequency and quantity of drinking among UK adults.
  • Investigate the impact that drinking has on other people.
  • Explore the impact of drinking on health and other health-related behaviours (e.g., gambling, smoking, drug use).
  • Explore awareness of the UK’s drinking guidelines.
The main objective of the qualitative research was to:

Gather the stories of people who have been impacted by someone else's drinking.

Survey questions

In addition to questions capturing the nation’s drinking behaviour, the survey included questions on:
  • The impact of drinking on others.
  • Prevalence of other risky behaviours (e.g., gambling, smoking, drug use).
  • Knowledge of, and access to, support for alcohol problems.
  • Drinking spiking [results to be published separately].
  • Life satisfaction and mental health.
  • Gender identity and sexual orientation.

For full questionnaire, see the technical report.


Survey Research

Drinkaware commissioned YouGov to undertake the research on our behalf. YouGov interviewed a UK wide sample of 6,318 adults aged 18 to 85, including 3,692 in England, 1,013 in Wales, 1,001 in Scotland and 612 in Northern Ireland.

The sample was drawn from the YouGov research panel, with responses collected between 29th April and 26th May 2022. The survey was carried out online.

Using data from the Office for National Statistics, the results have been weighted to be representative of the UK adult population according to age, gender, social grade and region. The sampling and weighting process is exactly consistent with that used in the 2017,2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021 Drinkaware Monitors.

Note: when compared to population-level sales data, self-reported surveys typically underestimate population alcohol consumption by between 30% and 60%.

For further information on methodology, and to view the questionnaire, please refer to the technical report.

Qualitative Research

Drinkaware commissioned PS Research to conduct qualitative research on individuals to gather the stories of people who have been impacted by someone else's drinking.

Individual in-depth conversations took place between 20th June and 18th July 2022. A total of 20 participants took part. Minimum quotas were set on gender, age, location and SEG to ensure a mix of participants. Seven males and 13 females took part, with five participants from each of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Conversations lasted between 45-60 minutes and were conducted either over an online video platform or over the telephone.

Participants were invited to tell their story of how they have been impacted the drinking of a partner, close friend or relative, with questioning and interruption kept to a minimum.

All participants had to be aged 18 or over and have a partner, close friend or relative who regularly drinks more than the recommended 14 units of alcohol per week and whose drinking has had a negative impact on their life. Minimum quotas were placed on the relationship of the person causing the impact and the type of impact experienced. The impact question from the 2022 Monitor was used to establish the type of impact experienced.

More information on the methodology can be found in the report.

Last Reviewed: 4th October 2021

Next Review due: 4th October 2025