Why Gen Z Drinks Less at Concerts Than Older Generations

March 2, 2024 - News

Why is Gen Z (people born between 1997 and 2012) drinking far less at concerts than the previous generations?

According to a live music CEO from Minneapolis, one of the biggest reasons is marijuana edibles.

“One of the big trends we’re seeing is that Gen Z doesn’t drink as much. They’re either eating edibles before they come or there’s more of a sober, mental health [focus]… Most of the ticket price goes on to the band, so really what [venues] subsist on is beverages. That’s not going to be a sustainable revenue stream,” the CEO said, per Consequence.

According to Billboard, the new trend, which is hurting smaller concert venues, began to emerge following the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Coming out of COVID-19, everything about the live music business was turned upside down,” another live music professional told the outlet.

The same person noted that there’s a 25 percent difference between Gen Z’s alcohol consumption at concerts and that of millennials, Gen X and boomers.

READ MORE: Study Reveals the U.S. States With the Worst Concert Crowds

Texas State University professor of psychology Ty Schepis said that while alcohol use is trending down among college students, marijuana use has risen to 37 percent.

On X (formerly Twitter), one concertgoer highlighted the trend by blaming the decline in drinking at concerts on the expensive prices of drinks at venues.

“Madison Square Garden charged me $40 for a tequila sunrise,” they wrote.

In a reply to the original tweet, they joked, “Follow me if you’ve also been victimized by MSG drink prices.”

Other fans shared similar stories in response.

“Me when I got a tequila Redbull and the bill was $48,” one person tweeted.

“Me and my $26 Whiteclaw against the world,” someone else shared.

Another person confirmed they are part of the demographic who would much rather enjoy some marijuana than shell out money for high-priced drinks.

“I’m pulling out my joints and sparking up. Saving myself a $100 tab,” they tweeted.

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Gallery Credit: Philip Trapp

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