Millennials are most responsible when it comes to drinking and driving: study

Higher percentage of Millennials serving as designated drivers while an aversion to social media shaming has a positive impact on Millennials choosing to drink less

Press release

Canadian Millennials between the ages of 18 and 34 are the country’s most responsible age group when it comes to drinking and driving, according to a recent study commissioned by Beer Canada’s Partners for Safer Communities initiative. Eight in 10 (82 per cent) Millennials of legal drinking age who have a driver’s license have served as a designated driver (DD) at some point during the last three years, compared to 67 per cent of Gen X’ers (ages 34-54) and just 55 per cent of Boomers (ages 55+).

Canada’s Millennials (ages 18-34) are worried about mixing social media and drinking. Fifty-one per cent of Canadian Millennials say they are concerned about the potential of being shamed on social media because of something inappropriate they did as a result of drinking too much.

“We found that nearly one in three (34 per cent) Millennials, say they’re more likely to use social media when they’ve been drinking,” says, Sean Simpson, Ipsos Canada.  “While three in 10 (29 per cent) Millennials admit that social media makes them do things they regret when they’ve been drinking, which likely explains why many are staying clear of mixing the two.”

The study also found that young Canadians are turning to social media and technology to plan ahead, while the emergence of ride sharing apps are helping them stay safe while drinking. Forty per cent of Millennials believe that social media helps them stay safe while they’re drinking, compared to just 21 per cent in the 35-54 age group and 18 per cent in the 55+ age group. Looking at some specific examples of how social media has an impact on alcohol consumption:

  • Thirty-seven per cent of Millennials say the existence of these apps makes them more likely to plan how they’re going to get home after a night of drinking because it makes it easier to plan ahead.
  • A majority (55 per cent) of Millennials have used apps to get home safely when they’ve been drinking, compared to just 29% of Gen X’ers, and 17 per cent of Baby Boomers.
  • A majority (63 per cent) of Millennials say they’re less likely to drink and drive because they would never want that information to get out on social media.

The study, conducted by Ipsos, was commissioned by Beer Canada as part of their Partners for Safer Communities #DDSuperHero campaign- a nationwide call for Canadians to show their support for the designated drivers in their communities.

“Designated drivers are super heroes who help keep communities safe. Half of Canadians (51 per cent) believe designated drivers in their communities do not receive the credit they deserve, so we wanted to help Canadians show their support by taking part in the #DDSuperHero social media campaign,” says Luke Harford, President, Beer Canada. “We created the #DDSuperHero in response to Ipsos market research on designated drivers and the role social media plays in Millennials’ and other generations’ decision making when it comes to planning for a night out.”

Canadians can visit to become a #DDSuperHero and share their super hero via social media. Canadians of legal drinking age from coast-to-coast are also encouraged to help keep their communities safe by pledging not to drink and drive.

Visit to become a #DDSuperHero and share your super hero via social media.

About Beer Canada:

Beer Canada is a national trade association that advocates on behalf of its 50+ members to ensure Canadian brewers are able to operate in a healthy regulatory environment and that beer remains a celebrated part of Canada’s culture. For more than three decades, Canadian brewers have invested a combined total of about $200 million to promote responsible drinking. The Partners for Safer Communities initiative builds on those financial investments.  However, equally important, it involves a considerable investment of time and effort by brewers and their employees to create an aligned industry effort.