How to Host an Amazing Virtual Happy Hour

Hosting an Amazing Virtual Happy Hour

The fact is that a pandemic is still happening. We’re still socially distancing and confused about what’s to come. Amid all of the not-normal, there’s at least one thing for sure: You miss your loved ones, and we do too. 

The safest way to connect with each other right now is through technology, which, in the grand scheme of things, is actually really cool. To be able to laugh at your friends’ dad jokes, see the top of your grandmother’s head, or play games with your family is truly a saving grace. 

Buuuuuuut…let’s get to the good stuff: the virtual happy hour.

Getting your drink on with pals is a must, even at a distance. Before we give you the steps, here are some tips that may be helpful.

  • Look at the camera when you’re talking, don’t look at yourself. We know it’s hard, but artificially *maintaining eye contact* really helps people feel connected. 
  • If you live with roommates, let them know about the happy hour. You don’t want anyone accidentally barging in on your fun, or becoming worried when you laugh so hard that it sounds like your sobbing. 
  • Have headphones ready. You don’t immediately have to use them, but if there are feedback issues – headphones are great to have to clear up that issue fast. 

STEP 1: Set the Meeting

Let your friends know what time / what platform / and how much booze they should prepare to drink. Are you Zoom-ing, or are you still repping for Skype? Are you looking to get absolutely hammed, or is this a wine and cheese night? 

Keep in mind, if you live in different time zones, things could get tricky. We recommend having everyone start roughly after 5PM and before 8PM. Setting an end time might also take the pressure off staying on the call for too long. If your end time is approaching and people want to stay on, that’s great!

STEP 2: Choose a Theme

Your friends will want to figure out a theme together. Are you all making the same cocktail? Are you hosting a silent disco? A murder mystery party? Or even, an ode to that awkward-work-happy-hour-turned-legendary-when-Jessica-brought-out-the-tequila? Either way, having a theme will keep your mind from wondering why you can’t physically be together and impress everyone with how much you’ve committed to this whole thing. 

We do recommend everyone commits at least a little. You don’t want Maisy showing up in a home-made Sherlock Holmes costume if everyone else just bought an eyeglass off Amazon. Commit.

STEP 3: Play Games

People are competitive by nature, games make it easier to connect than staring at your computer screen trying to follow a casual conversation. Make sure everyone knows how to play before you start your happy hour and that everyone knows to bring their A-game. A pandemic (or distance) shouldn’t stop you from completely obliterating your crush during Jackbox Games.

We know it’s not the same, but a virtual happy hour will at least give you a little slice of normalcy. Have fun, be safe, and please, dear god – make sure you’re not muted.

For more fun virtual happy hour ideas, click here for more ideas from Snack Nation.

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