Driving Hungover

How long after drinking can you drive? Are there risks to driving hungover? Here's what your auto insurance company wants you to know about driving hungover.

Compare Personalized Auto Insurance Quotes And Save Money:

Driving Hungover

After a long night out with friends, nothing is worse than the pounding headache and nausea you feel, until you get into the car and try driving hungover. It’s not easy to do with the bright sunlight and constant interactions with other people. That could be why it is not always safe to drive with a hangover. If you are hoping to get behind the wheel after having a few drinks, it is critical to know how long it takes for alcohol to wear off and how to minimize risks to others.

Blood Alcohol Content – Is Driving with a Hangover Okay?

The blood alcohol content of a person who has consumed alcohol will be different from someone else’s even if they drink the same number of drinks. Many factors play a role in this. However, the more you drink, the longer your hangover will be and the more intense it is likely to be. You also want to consider that driving with a hangover is dangerous simply because you are sure to have a hard time focusing on the road in front of you.


Even after you no longer have alcohol in your system, it is dangerous to get behind the wheel of a car. You will not be able to focus on the road, and you may find yourself struggling with pain and illness. In addition to this, a hangover can cause you to have difficulty seeing clearly – the glare from the sun could be so intense that you find it nearly impossible to be able to see well. All of these factors add up to create unsafe driving conditions for you. That also means now may be the best time to wait until you feel better before you get into the car.


How long you have to wait depends on various factors. Most importantly, you should not drive with a hangover if you feel tired, nauseous, or otherwise unable to focus on the road in front of you. Taking those steps can give you the ability to feel confident behind the wheel again.

What Is a Hangover?

A hangover occurs as a result of drinking alcohol. Generally speaking, alcohol works to dehydrate the body. As it does, it can interact with every organ. It can cause you to experience sensitivity to light. You may have a headache or feel sick to your stomach. Many people find themselves overwhelmed with fatigue and just need to sleep. In all of these situations, you are experiencing what a hangover can do to you even after just a few drinks. That is also reason enough to take steps to get some help so you can avoid driving.

How Long for Alcohol to Wear Off to Make It Safe to Drive?

Just how long does it take for alcohol to wear off so you can drive safely? First, you should never get behind the wheel if you have had a few drinks. It is always best to wait until you can go home and sleep before you drive again. However, alcohol can continue to rise in your body for up to three hours after you have stopped drinking. If you have consumed a significant amount, that could be even longer.


Most of the time, if you consume a standard drink, you should allow at least an hour for that to clear your body before you start driving. If you have two drinks, give it at least two hours.

How to Cure Hangover Nausea

Now that you are feeling bad after your night out, you just want to cure your pain. You can learn how to cure hangover nausea by using any of the remedies found online. However, in all cases, your body needs to rest and recover from the experience. This means it needs to become hydrated again. You also need to consume food including protein to help the body to build back up strength. You should not drive your car until you are sure that you are not at risk.

Why Hangover Effects Could Impact Your Auto Insurance

Hangover effects car insurance in a roundabout manner. That is, your auto insurance company does not care if you have a hangover. As long as you are not drinking and driving, they are okay with you consuming alcohol. However, if you have a hangover and get into an accident because you feel so bad, that can impact your car insurance costs especially if a claim is made as a result of the damage you do to another person’s car.


Any time you feel you are unable to drive with confidence and safety, avoid getting behind the driver’s wheel. You want to be sure you have the ability to do well and keep everyone in your car and on the road with you safe.