Tech-savy drinking: Essential apps for Unofficial

By Sarah Soenke

There’s more to preparing for Unofficial than alcohol stock ups and sleeping arrangements. Whether it’s a beer or a phone in hand, make sure to be fully equipped for whatever the unofficial drinking holiday calls for. 


This free downloadable app keeps users updated on bar options in real time before heading out for the night (or for this case, the day). Two University students created and launched the app in September, making it specific to the Illinois campus and its bar activity.

With features like cover prices, capacity levels, specials and male-to-female ratios, this app can save all bar hoppers valuable time and money, while helping to plan the perfect Unofficial bar route.


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Before committing to a drinking goal, party goers should keep track of their individual blood alcohol content (BAC) levels to know their limits. A variety of apps, both free and for purchase, can calculate estimations for responsible drinking, but IntelliDrink might be the most comprehensive and worth the $1.99.

The app lets users track multiple BACs at once and will illustrate them through colorful graphs. Users can set up notifications to know when they’re sober and when they reach other certain BAC levels.

Find My iPhone

The festivities might get crazy, but smartphones shouldn’t fall victim. Unofficial participants can ensure the survival of their iPhones by preparing for the worst — waking up without it.

By connecting the free app to an iCloud account, users can feel assured that, in case of a hazy morning after, they’ll be able to locate their iPhone on a map, lock it remotely, display a message for its safe return and even erase all the data on it.


For the thrifty or creative drinker, Mixology can spark new concoctions to drink and enjoy based on what’s available in a user’s fridge.

By being plugged into this app, nearly any odd assortment of alcoholic and non-alcoholic ingredients can generate drink recipes. Other features — like random, search by ingredient and bartending guide — can make this year’s Unofficial a crash course in binge-drinking know how.

Drunk Dial NO!

Ex-significant others and unknowing family members do not have to hear about students’ Unofficial activities. Prevent any regretful decisions this Unofficial by taking away the ability to drunk dial.

The Drunk Dial NO! app allows users to hide contacts’ phone numbers and emails for up to 48 hours. Contacts can be blocked as individuals or even as a group, and users can even create self-addressed messages to be delivered up to seven hours in the future to warn against bad behavior from their sober selves.

I’m Getting Arrested

Available for Android phones, I’m Getting Arrested can be Unofficial participants last resort in case of a law enforcement emergency. With one click, users can send out a custom text message to designated contacts as an SOS if facing legal repercussions on Friday.

Since its release, the app has been translated to 13 different languages. Originally created in 2011 in light of “Occupy” protests, the app most likely will not serve the same unified purpose during Unofficial, but at least friends will know why and when someone disappears from the party or bar.