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On Election Night, Americans Self-Medicated With Delivery Food and Booze

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Alcohol sales were “through the roof”


On election night, as polls and projections began unraveling, millions of people throughout the country consoled themselves the American way: with copious amounts of delivered food and booze. According to data provided by Postmates and Grubhub, delivery orders began to spike as the polls were closing last Tuesday and Indian, Thai, and Mexican proved among the most popular cuisines of the evening.

According to Postmates, total demand for delivery on Tuesday, November 8 was up 20 percent from a week prior. Perhaps unsurprisingly the dinner rush had a higher percentage of the daily demand than usual and coincided with the polls closing in the evening.

A Postmates spokesperson said in an email that demand for alcohol was “through the roof,” at more than 97 percent higher week-over-week. And the attempts to drink away the sorrows — or toast to victory, depending upon who was drinking — didn’t stop that night. Postmates also saw a noticeable peak in alcohol orders during lunch the day after Election Day.


DoorDash, a competitor of Postmates, also saw a spike in orders of wine, beer, and spirits. Compared to other Tuesdays in November and October, 90 percent more people ordered from liquor stores and 50 percent more ordered from wine bars.

MarketWatch notes that Caviar — a food delivery service owned by Square that operates in New York, Philadelphia, Portland, Seattle, Dallas, and San Francisco — saw orders for tacos and taco bowls jump 115 percent across its delivery zones on Election Day.

Grubhub also noticed a spike in food orders, with a spokesperson highlighting the fact that “we generally see our users rally around the TV with friends and family for large cultural moments.” Debate nights, for instance, saw a 16 percent (average) increase in group orders.

Pizza was, of course, a popular option, but on election night, viewers who ordered delivery turned to other warming, comforting meals. Pad Thai was especially popular in LA last Tuesday; Chicago diners placed 266 percent more orders for crab rangoon; and New Yorkers ordered 412 percent more chips and salsa than on comparable nights.

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