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Alcohol sales soared 68% on Election Day, with Democratic states buying the most: Drizly

Daniel Howley
·Technology Editor
·3 min read

If you thought Tuesday’s presidential election, and the ensuing week of tally watching, was stressful, you weren’t the only one reaching for a cold beer. According to boozy delivery app Drizly, Tuesday’s election saw a massive jump in sales through its platform, to the tune of a 68% increase over the previous four Tuesdays.

The service, which allows you to order alcohol ranging from beer to liquor and everything in between from stores in your area, told Yahoo Finance that the election, like similar political events, is a catalyst for major sales spikes.

“Historically around elections, or I would say key political moments inclusive of debates too, we do generally see increases in sales,” Liz Paquette, Drizly’s head of consumer insights, said in an interview.

“Those moments tend to be kind of this collective public moment where people are either getting together to watch what’s going down or deciding to enjoy a drink while they do so.”

Major cities in particular saw large jumps in sales, with orders coming in 133% higher in Washington D.C. than the four previous Tuesdays, 110% higher in New York City, 55% higher in Chicago, and 34% higher in Los Angeles. Drizly declined to share absolute sales numbers with Yahoo Finance.

Interestingly, according to Drizly’s statistics, Republican states including Idaho, Wyoming, Oklahoma, and Kentucky had smaller increases than traditionally Democratic strongholds. Those traditionally red states came in 33% higher than the average of the four prior Tuesdays, while sales in California, Oregon, Washington, Illinois, New Jersey, and New York were 75% higher.

People react to the state of California staying a Democrat state during the election night at the Abbey Food & Bar in West Hollywood, California on November 3, 2020. - Americans were voting on Tuesday under the shadow of a surging coronavirus pandemic to decide whether to reelect Republican Donald Trump, one of the most polarizing presidents in US history, or send Democrat Joe Biden to the White House. (Photo by VALERIE MACON / AFP) (Photo by VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images)
People react to the state of California staying a Democrat state during the election night at the Abbey Food & Bar in West Hollywood, California on November 3, 2020.. (Photo by VALERIE MACON / AFP) (Photo by VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images)

When it comes to age groups, Drizly’s stats show that 28- to 41-year-olds were the ones making the most orders on the big night.

While the 2020 election has certainly been polarizing for the nation, Drizly says it wasn’t completely out of the ordinary as far as sales go. The company says that the 2016 election also saw an increase in sales of 69% compared to the four previous Tuesdays. So it turns out people might just like to get together and drink on election night.

“As we look back at 2016 in particular...the sales increase from prior Tuesdays was pretty on par with 2020, so it wasn’t like it was this dramatic increase this year in particular because of the political climate,” Paquette said.

“Generally, how people are interacting with our platforms is that there are these key occasions throughout the year where we see purchase increase. It’s the same for Christmas, Halloween, Cinco De Mayo,” she added.

Drizly has been one of the many companies that has benefited from a year of uncertainty. The pandemic alone proved to be a major boon for the firm, with CEO Cory Rellas telling Yahoo Finance in April that the lockdowns associated with the coronavirus has led to the biggest shift in the alcohol supply chain since Prohibition. Indeed, Nielsen said in March that online alcohol sales had jumped 243% in the week ending March 21, right after much of the country locked down. Overall sales were up 55% that week.

In April, the World Health Organization advised that alcohol access should be restricted during lockdowns, noting that people with an alcohol use disorder are particularly vulnerable when they’re isolated.

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Got a tip? Email Daniel Howley at dhowley@yahoofinance.com over via encrypted mail at danielphowley@protonmail.com, and follow him on Twitter at @DanielHowley.

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