FROM HYGGE TO HOGMANAY – HOW THE WORLD CELEBRATES THE FESTIVE SEASON

Global research by Diageo explores celebration rituals across the world as two-thirds (66%) raise a toast of celebration. Findings reveal the Danish art of hygge is alive and well with over half (57%) choosing to host a simple festive celebration at home.

Global research released today by Diageo examines the shape of modern festive celebrations and shows the continuing importance of the centuries old tradition of raising a toast at this time of year. From trying to work your way up in the workplace, to hoping to get noticed by a romantic interest, the findings explore the reasons that people continue to perform toasting traditions across the world.

The global study of almost 7,000 adults shows the Danish concept of hygge, which erupted in popularity over the last year, continues to grow in different guises around the world. Hygge, often translated as cosiness, means creating a warm atmosphere at home and enjoying the good things in life with good people.

Celebrating at home is more popular than going out with over half (57%) choosing to mark the moment by hosting others at home. In the hygge homeland of Demark, only 15% of people see going out to celebrate as important, the lowest of any country, whereas the majority (85%) of Indians still see being out somewhere special as key to any festive celebration.

From clinking glasses to toasting speeches, the research explores the cultural significance of celebration rituals. Nearly half (47%) agree that marking a moment through a specific act or phrase is a crucial part of their cultural heritage, while a superstitious fifth (20%) do so in order to ward off bad luck in their romantic endeavours. Men are the most likely to use a toast to attempt to impress their loved ones, with two-fifths (43%) seeing a toast as a way to catch the eye of a romantic interest, compared to only a third (33%) of women. When considering how to make a good or bad impression, drinking to excess is the ultimate festive faux pas, with nearly two thirds (63%) seeing this as a way festive celebrations can be spoiled.

The most important factors to mark the moment and enjoy festive celebrations around the world: having the right company (89%), having the right food accompaniments (78%), hosting others at your home (57%), having the right alcoholic drinks (52%), special rituals (e.g. clinking glasses) (47%).

Carolyn Panzer, Alcohol in Society Director, Diageo said: “Toasting as a way to mark the moment during a celebration is nothing new, but our research shows just how far the tradition has come since its beginnings in the Neolithic period. Our research suggests two thirds of the world will be raising a toast of celebration this festive season and we know that where people celebrate, and who they do it with, is just as important as the drinks they choose to toast with. The global language of celebration is about people enjoying rituals and traditions that help mark the moment at this special time of year.”

Data on what people are searching for online also shows people are increasingly seeking out ways to raise the perfect toast. In the last four years, searches for topics such as ‘cheers’ and ‘the perfect toast’ across India, the US and the UK have increased by nearly two-thirds (60%).

Search data also shows people are ever more international in their toasting, searches for phrases like ‘cheers in…’ other languages have increased by 163%, with Italian (“Saluti!”) proving to be the most popular language for searches.

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