(QCOSTARICA) It’s the weekend but it doesn’t feel it anymore because the pandemic took away the weekend outings for a beer – a cerveza or ‘birrita’.
According to a recent survey by the Kantar company, 58% of Central Americans no longer plan to go out for a birra as a precaution against COVID-19, such as bars, restaurants and coffee shops.
One of the sectors that changed the way of consumption was that of beverages, according to the study.
In the case of ‘beers’, consumption at home, between April and August 2020, rose by 12%
However, many say that the beers don’t taste the same.
“Having a few beers and drinks at a bar counter, with a gathering, conversation, bartender and snacks taste completely different. I live in Paso Ancho and here every fifty meters there is a bar or a canteen and there are always people downing away.
“Of course, now distancing and a certain number of clients, the mask, I have seen that there is a lot of caution due to so many cases of coronavirus that are being registered,” said Carlos “Portionzón” Ramos.
For the comedian, the stress that accumulates from having to stay cooped up at home is reflected on long weekends, with the endless lines of cars heading to the beach, since that is like an escape for people, like opening the corral, to a brave bull in Zapote.
“Of course, we have to keep the protocol measures to take care of ourselves, that’s the way it should be. If you have to have a drink at home, it hurts,” said Porcio.
Galo Guerra, a behavior modification psychologist, recognized that going to a bar works as a relaxing measure and is a stress reducer, as it helps to distract oneself and forget about problems.
However, Guerra maintains that everything must be done in good time. If people choose to take the beers home, enjoying it will depend on whether they used to do this before the pandemic, or if they preferred to go to the bar, there they will feel the change.
“As a psychological experience, it will not taste the same to people who are used to go to the bar, least of all those who went there to escape problems and certain environments. To these, the beer will taste a bit bitter, as if to say what do I have left?”
“To this is added that there is no longer the atmosphere of the trusty bar, that type of contact is missed, just as the hug and contact with our friends is missed. It is a human experience that is being reduced, but to which one must adjust according to the current reality,” explained the expert, who stressed that even if it is at home, it is necessary to take measures not to over do it to avoid increasing rates of domestic violence.
It is already a trend
Gisela Sánchez, director of Corporate Relations at FIFCO, the beer, alcohol and soft drinks company, acknowledged that they have felt in their sales that people buy more to drink at home.
“Indeed, since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March, the pattern of alcoholic beverages consumption in the country has changed significantly. Some people are shopping at supermarkets, liquor stores, convenience stores, and home delivery platforms to enjoy the products in their homes.
“However, the closures of bars and restrictions in restaurants and other customers, where the product is consumed on the premises, have significantly impacted the sale of beer and alcoholic beverages in general,” said Sánchez.
She added that the government’s proposal to convert bars into sodas and restaurants has not helped much and is not reflected in sales.
“Not yet. The reopening of bars has not been able to materialize in most of the clients because they do not have the infrastructure, financial capacity and resources to operate as a restaurant.
“We hope that the Government can approve a restaurant bar regulation that adjusts to the reality of these thousands of businesses and finally can operate and generate income for thousands of families who need it so badly at this time,” she concluded.