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Grabbing a beer with friends, family, or coworkers is a common way for people to unwind, catch up, and socialize. And if you’re heading to a party or social gathering, you might go ahead and bring a case of beer to share with the group. But how much will that cost? At Simple. Thrifty. Living., we conducted a study to find out just how much a case of beer costs in each state.
We used the same methodology as our 2017 version of this study. We found the prices from national or regional retailers in up to 10 zip codes in each state for a 24-pack of Bud Light and Miller Lite. We chose those beers and that volume due to the national popularity. The zip codes chosen were a mix of urban and rural areas to get a representation of different parts of each state. We averaged the prices of the two beers together and rounded to the nearest cent. The numbers reflect prices only, taken from the retailers, and do not reflect any additional taxes or fees, such as recycling fees.
After the data was compiled and analyzed, we found that there are distinct differences throughout the United States when it comes to the cost of beer. Additionally, the results were significantly different than what we found in 2017.
Illinois came in as the cheapest state for beer at $15.20 a case, dethroning Michigan (now tied for number 5) for the top spot. In fact, Illinois and Michigan are the only states to remain in the top 5 cheapest states from the previous study. Rounding out the top 5 from 2019 are South Carolina ($15.32), New York ($15.98), Rhode Island ($15.98), and Kansas and Michigan (both at $16.07). Michigan went up nearly $1.50 a case since 2017.
As for the most expensive states for a case of beer, this year’s top 5 are quite different as well. Alaska comes in with the highest price at a whopping $31.21 a case. Wyoming ($26.68), Hawaii ($22.39), Montana ($22.28), and Tennessee ($22.25) round out the rest of the top 5. Tennessee is the only state still in the top 5 from the 2017 study. Pennsylvania, the most expensive state in 2017, dropped to number 7 in this year’s rankings. We found that a case of beer in PA is $0.40 cheaper now.
If you live in a state that is one of the most expensive for beer, there are still many ways you can save money when shopping and budgeting for beer:
If you’re smart about how you spend your money, a few extra bucks for a case of beer won’t break your bank. And who knows, it might end up saving you a lot more in moving expenses.