Best And Worst Hangover Cities In The Nation? A New Look
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Best And Worst Hangover Cities In The Nation? Taking A Look Through The Conflicting Data

Worst Hangover Cities

San Francisco is either the best or worst hangover city in America depending on who you ask. But what does a “best hangover” even look like? (Photo: Pixabay/Pexels)

Whether you’re toasting Champagne or chugging cocktails at the bar, Americans’ propensity for alcohol (and hangovers) is well documented. How you wake up the next morning, however, may depend entirely on where you live.

Rummaging through the data, ranked the 20 most populated cities in the nation to determine the best and worst hangover spots. Each location’s “Average Hangover Score” was determined by the following criteria: bar density, excessive alcohol consumption, 24-hour food joints and IV hydration clinics per capita.


If you live in San Jose, time to let out a breath of relief — the city clocked in at #1, buoyed by a staggering number of 24-hour restaurants and a slim 15% excessive alcohol consumption rate.

An hour down the Bay Area coast, things look a little different. San Francisco came in dead last, a city with a bar density second only to Dallas and an excess consumption rate of 36%.

Chicago, meanwhile, recorded the highest excess consumption rate in the nation (49%). Heavy-drinking states like Wisconsin, Nevada and New Hampshire didn’t rank due to their comparatively low populations.

Some of these metrics, of course, will vary from person to person; the IV hydration industry is still years away from becoming a mainstay with casual drinkers. But, even after you’ve sorted through all the odds and ends, the actual meaning of “best hangover city” is still ambiguous at best — after all, what does a “best hangover” even look like?

We thought we’d do some cross-referencing.

In a fascinating twist, San Francisco is regularly ranked as the best hangover city by a number of other sources. LawnLove reports that San Fran has the highest number of coffee shops per square mile in the US: the outlet ranked the city #1 for hangover drinks, #2 for getting home, #7 for “other remedies” and #12 for sleeping in public.

Meanwhile, Business Insider ranked spots like Lawrence, Kansas and Billings, Montana as the “most hungover cities” in the country, using to metrics like hospital admittances and liquor stores per capita.

Across rankings, a distinction emerges between hangover hotspots and hangover recovery hotspots.

By all accounts, San Fran is where you’re most likely to get hungover and then, possibly, cured in the morning. Though overpriced lattes and homeopathic remedies may not be everyone’s cup of tea, the city offers a dazzling array of post-booze remedies despite its lack of 24-hour food joints. The city’s reputation as a nightlife hotspot certainly checks out.

Cities like San Jose, Phoenix and Jacksonville appear to be where you’re least likely to get drunk — but if you do manage to wake up one morning after a few too many drinks, rest assured you’ll be treated well.

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Pedro Wolfe is the managing editor of Tequila Raiders. With several years of experience writing for the New York Daily News and the Foothills Business Daily under his belt, Pedro aims to combine quality reviews and recipes with incisive articles on the cutting edge of the tequila world. Pedro has traveled to the heartland of the spirits industry in Tequila, Mexico, and has conducted interviews with agave spirits veterans throughout Mexico, South Africa and California. Through this diverse approach, Tequila Raiders aims to celebrate not only tequila but the rich tapestry of agave spirits that spans mezcal, raicilla, bacanora, pulque and so much more.