People seem to document everything on social media these days — particularly during the holidays, when Instagram and Facebook is flooded with photos of frosty pint glasses, icy Margaritas, and countless bottles of rosé. That collective obsession led an alcohol awareness group to conduct a study of which vacation spots people drink the most at.
The study analyzed 1,000 Instagram posts from 143 cities with the hashtag #VacationMode or #Vacay to determine which cities were drinking destinations.
While an interesting approach, the study focuses on correlation, not causation. While the research method was not entirely empirical or scientific, the study was interesting nonetheless.
Here are the top five with the percent of posts that included an alcoholic beverage:
- Portland, Oregon: 10 percent.
- Denver, Colorado: 8.5 percent
- New Orleans, Louisiana: 8.3 percent.
- Los Angeles, California: 6.9 percent.
- Austin, Texas: 5.9 percent.
Internationally, Sweden had the largest percentage of Instagram posts with an image of alcohol at a modest 5%. Thirty-six percent of drinks were cocktails, 25 percent of photos featured beer, and 15 percent of photos featured wine.
There could be any variety of reasons for these results. The presence of a large craft beer and craft distillery scene in places like Portland and Austin make the cities trendy places to try new drinks. Places like New Orleans have historical and cultural influences such as Mardi Gras and Jazz clubs that help shape the drinking identity of the Big Easy. Denver, which is one of the largest ski hubs in the western U.S., is home to a thriving craft beer scene as well as the culturally obligatory Après Ski happy hour.
Drinking on vacation is common, and by all means it should be enjoyable. I wouldn’t be the first person on the planet to have a second Martini on Labor Day or drink beer all day during Fourth of July. However, binge drinking can pose serious health risks, so it would be wise to pay attention to how much you’re drinking during these holiday weekends. Take a couple pictures for your Instagram feed, but also try to live in the moment instead of constantly documenting it.