Sales data shows that margaritas are the number one most popular cocktail in the U.S. and, while you can indulge at any time of year, Cinco de Mayo is a natural time to order a round of margs.
With Cinco de Mayo coming up, the FinanceBuzz team wanted to see where this well-loved libation costs the most and least. Our team looked up the average cost of a margarita at bars and restaurants in every state to find the highest and lowest prices nationwide.
- The average price for a margarita around the country is $8.48 on average — up 8% from last year.
- The state where a margarita costs the most is New Jersey, at $12.29 on average.
- Each state in the top 10 have average margarita prices of $10 or more on average.
- A margarita is most affordable in Alabama, where it costs just $6.13 on average.
- At $6.24, Arkansas is the only other state that has an average marg cost under $7.
The average cost for a margarita in every state
Across the country, Cinco celebrants can expect to shell out $9.16 on average for a margarita. But people in certain states can expect to pay nearly three dollars above or below that amount.
The national average cost of a margarita is 68 cents more than last year’s average price of $8.48, which represents an 8% increase in price year-over-year.
States where a margarita is most expensive
Top 10 most-expensive states for a margarita
|Rank||State||Average cost||Percent above national average|
|7||District of Columbia||$11.01||20%|
Residents of New Jersey will have to budget for Cinco de Mayo. The average price for a margarita in N.J. is the highest in the country at $12.20. That is 33% higher than the national average, and a full 25 cents higher than the second-place state, Arizona.
Six of the 10 states where margaritas are most expensive are in the western US. Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, New Mexico, and Washington state all feature margarita costs that are at least 15% above the national average.
The remaining states and districts in the top 10 are New Jersey, New York, Washington, D.C., and Massachusetts — all of which are located on the East Coast, meaning that none of the states in the middle of the country charge enough for a margarita to rank among the most expensive states in the country.
States where a margarita is least expensive
Top 10 least-expensive states for a margarita
|Rank||State||Average cost||Percent below national average|
Alabamans enjoy the lowest margarita prices in the country in 2023. Alabama had this same distinction last year. The state’s average margarita cost of $6.13 is 33% lower than the nationwide average, narrowly edging out Arkansas’s price of $6.24 for the top spot.
Alabama and Arkansas are also the only states with average margarita costs under $7.
All 10 states where a margarita is least expensive are evenly split between two regions. Five of these states are in the South (Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, West Virginia, and South Carolina) while the remaining five are located in the Midwest (Kansas, Wisconsin, Missouri, Iowa, and Nebraska).
Even if you live in an area where margaritas cost more than the national average, it’s always possible to save money while enjoying your cocktail of choice. Here are some of our top tips for saving while you sip on your favorite drink the next time you go out on the town:
- Eat and drink your way to rewards. Some credit cards offer specific rewards if you use them to pay your bill at the end of dinner or drinks. Use one of the best credit cards for dining out every time you’re at a restaurant or pub to get the most out of your experience.
- Choose a credit card that rewards your experiences. If you’re someone who enjoys performances and dining out, choose a card that offers cash back. A cash back credit card with no annual fee could help you earn cash back on the experiences you love, such as dinner and drinks.
- Earn travel rewards for an authentic Mexican experience. For those who love margaritas and Mexican food, a trip to the home country is a must. Consider signing up for the Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card to earn rewards for your next trip across the border.
FinanceBuzz collected the price for a "house" lime margarita or equivalent from current online menus from 10 different restaurants or bars in each state, and then averaged those prices to find the average cost for a margarita in every state. Pricing for each restaurant/bar’s smallest size margarita was used throughout. Price data was collected in April 2023.