This study aims to address the underlying trajectories of weekly individual drinking patterns by growth models and to relate differences in drinking patterns to socio-demographic and drinking characteristics of respondents. Data came from a two-stage stratified random subsample of 747 persons aged 15 years or more from a Swiss study on alcohol consumption using a within-subject design conducted between March 1999 and July 1999. Beverage specific assessment of daily alcohol consumption was obtained by a weekly drinking diary and other characteristics via telephone interviews. The diary had to be filled out on seven consecutive days. The growth models accounted for up to 37.6% of the initial error variance and provided evidence for two distinct, negatively correlated underlying trajectories of drinking patterns. The first trajectory described an increase in consumption from Monday to Sunday. The second trajectory was about a specific weekend consumption culminating on Saturday with a significantly higher growth rate among young people and heavy episodic drinkers than in other subgroups. Therefore, young and heavy episodic drinkers may be exposed to sudden adverse consequences of alcohol consumption during the weekend. Prevention efforts which are targeted to this subgroup should take its specific drinking pattern into account.