Insights from our new Social Status Report

Young adults are embracing mindful drinking and even abstaining from alcohol altogether, as highlighted in our Social Status Report. As they seek to have UnWasted Time, they’re socializing in ways where alcohol isn’t the main focus or even present at all. More companies and events are emerging to meet this new social norm and disrupting nightlife in the process.


Nearly four in 10 Trendsetters aged 21-34 in the U.S. are interested in participating in nightlife activities that do not involve alcohol. One of the reasons for this, as we heard in qualitative research, is that young people want to have more meaningful, less sloppy, social interactions. The Shine is among such companies catering to this preference. The alcohol-free variety show hosts events every few months in NYC and LA, featuring live music, storytelling and meditation, encouraging attendees to make lasting connections. The New York Times has called it happy hour without the booze.


Fewer than two in 10 Trendsetters of legal drinking age say it’s hard to be social without drinking alcohol. This perception is made easier by the rise in festivals that focus on wellness over wastedness. South Africa’s multi-day SpiritFest is one such festival that promises to keep attendees in good spirits without alcohol. The annual event features yoga, music, and dancing and actively promotes itself as a drug, alcohol, smoke, and attitude-free space. Moreover, the event caters to young people’s shifting preference away from nightlife and instead helps them Seize The Day; late night dance parties end at 10pm, so attendees can wake up ready for sunrise yoga and meditation.


About three in 10 Trendsetters have consciously chosen to stop drinking alcohol for an extended period of time (e.g. sober week/sober month), which is giving rise to more events that celebrate socializing without booze, including dry dinners. Conscious Family Dinner is among the many companies now doing so; it currently hosts ticketed experiences for about 200 people each month in LA and is expanding nationwide soon. Attendees can engage in alternate nightlife activities such as meditation, tarot card readings, and intellectual discussions while making new connections and enjoying delicious meals.