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Where is the cheapest place to celebrate ahead of St Patrick's Day

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St Patrick's Day is drawing near and you likely want to go and celebrate, but where is the best place to go? 

Pub-goers looking to enjoy a pint of Guinness ahead of St. Patrick’s Day might be shocked to learn that the price of a pint can vary by up to 117% in different pubs across the UK and Ireland.

New cost analysis by leading job board CV-Library gathered the price of a pint of Guinness in over 200 pubs across 20 different cities in the UK and Republic of Ireland and found that cheapest pint was in Newport, Wales.

Of the cities analysed, the most expensive pint was found in London and priced at £5.20, over half the London Living Wage. This is 74% more expensive than the cheapest price located in the capital and 70% pricier than the cheapest pint found north of the border in Scotland (£3.05, or just over a third of the UK Living Wage). Dublin was close behind, with the Irish Capital’s most expensive pint coming in at £5.10, only 10p cheaper than London.

In Newport, Wales, the cheapest pint (£2.40) is £1.50 lower than the total average across the UK and ROI (£3.90) and enough for an extra pack of pork scratchings! This was closely followed by Lisburn, Northern Ireland, which had pints on offer for as little as £2.95. 

Dublin (and London), the St. Patrick’s Day party capitals, were found to have the highest pricing while Derry, Newport and Dundee came in as the cheapest cities. On average, a single pint of Guinness costs £3.40 across the three cities compared to the average of £4.45 in both capital cities, suggesting that it might be worth trying somewhere new this year.

Birmingham and London were found to have the greatest variance, with prices changing up to £1.95, depending on the watering hole of choice. This was closely followed by Newport, Wales (£1.60) and the Northern Irish cities of Lisburn (£1.55) and Belfast (£1.35). 

On the flip side, two cities in the Republic of Ireland displayed the least variation in price, with pints in Waterford only shifting up to 11% (40p) and Drogheda only 13% (50p).

On a national level, Wales showed the biggest fluctuation in cost, with prices varying by up to £2.10. The Irish had the least variance (32%), with prices ranging between £3.85-£5.10, while the prices in England displayed greater inconsistency, with amounts shifting up to 74% across London, Liverpool, Birmingham and Manchester.

Scotland (51%) and Northern Ireland (56%) fell in the middle, with pricing alternating from £3.05-£4.60 for the Scots and £2.95-£4.60 for the Irish.

Lee Biggins, founder and managing director of CV-Library commented: “With St. Patrick’s Day just around the corner, we know workers across the whole of the UK and, of course, the Emerald Isle will be celebrating. Yet by comparing the price of Ireland’s favourite beer to living wages across the UK and the Republic of Ireland, we were surprised to find how significantly it can vary.”

So, if you're looking for a great night out but don't want to be ripped off it might be better looking further afield. Why visit Dublin or London when there are plenty of other towns which will offer much better prices. For a true Irish experience at a much better price, it might be better to check out Lisburn or Belfast. Meanwhile, for those looking to party in England, it's a good idea to avoid the capital and find a smaller city in which to drink. 

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