The global pandemic impacted our lives in more ways than we could imagine.
The way we eat, drink and socialise was changed for the foreseeable. Pubs, bars and restaurants were forced to close, and potentially never open again.
And there is no doubt; the lockdown has had a profound impact on the drinks industry.
But what are some of the long lasting effects on our drinking habits in particular? And how is the mobile bar hire industry adapting to this?
With people unable to spend on holiday travel and commuting, spend on quality food and drinks for the household increased substantially.
Cocktail lovers alike were taking to their own kitchens and cocktail gift sets (hidden away from last Christmas) to expand their knowledge.
People began to embrace their inner mixologist. They set up their own cocktail bars and gin bars in the garden. The fruit bowl had never seen so much action.
Lets be honest, there’s nothing quite like the local beer on tap. But lockdown provided everyone the chance to improvise and to learn a new skill in cocktail making.
Furthermore, the Bacardi Holiday Survey 2020 stated that one in five UK consumers are hosting virtual cocktail parties from their homes (20%).
This proves that lockdown has encouraged consumers to utilise vast-audience platforms (e.g. Instagram) with their new make-at-home cocktail kits and visually appealing drinks-to-go.
Another hot trend arising from lockdown is cocktails in a can.
Who’d have thought?
Pre-pandemic, it has to be said online purchasing of any alcohol didn’t come close to catching the attention of spirit shoppers.
But now, the pandemic has certainly increased the popularity for a safe, affordable and portable drink option.
Cocktails in a can have been at the forefront of this – seeing the biggest increase in demand (up 21% from last year) of any ‘ready-to-drink’ option across Western Europe.
“The lockdowns appear to have increased their popularity as a safe and portable drink option.”
- Brenda Hala, Global Vice President of Bacardi
To become more resilient to this trend, Bacardi themselves have collaborated with e-commerce partners such as Cocktail Courier and ReserveBar grow their online presence for consumers.
The third and final drinks trend from lockdown is the soaring sales of no- and low (Nolo) alcohol drinks in the supermarkets.
It’s fair to say restrictions and curfews have increased consumers’ thirst for hangover-free options when doing the weekly shop.
With initiatives like ‘Sober October’ and ‘Dry January’ coming into play, retail sales of ‘nolo’ options increased by 30% (to £188m) in 2020.
As a result, mobile bar hires from all around the nation will have to adapt their drinks selection to cater for the public’s increased focus on health and well-being.
It’s clear that a new culture of convenience and health has risen in the drinks sector and the mobile bar industry.
The European Journal of Social Psychology concluded that it takes 66 days for a new behaviour to become automatic. Which would mean that normal service will not be resumed once restrictions allow.
But with crisis comes opportunity.
And the revolution of knowledgeable and savvy consumer implies mobile bar hire companies can afford to invest greater into their cocktail skillsets whilst still serving ‘to-go’ and ‘nolo’ options alike.
Looking for a modern, tech-savvy and centric mobile bar for your special day? Ice Events believe in helping our clients celebrate their major events in a way that suits them - so that they can remember it for the rest of their lives.