Food is officially more important than the game when it comes to reasons for attending a Super Bowl party, according to new research.
A survey of 2,000 American adults asked respondents the top reasons for getting together on the biggest sporting day of the year — and found that food topped the list (56%).
That was followed by simply being social (54%), while less than half (49%) said the game itself was the main reason they’ve taken part in a Super Bowl party in the past.
The number four and five spots for attending were family time (45%) and to watch the commercials (38%), respectively.
Conducted by OnePoll in conjunction with snack and appetizer brand Farm Rich, results revealed 40% of respondents have been so wrapped up in the food and social side of things that they missed most of the game.
With food taking center field, it makes sense that the number one game day essential is the snacks (44%), followed by alcohol (35%) and then non-alcoholic drinks (32%).
But all that drinking may come with a price — and corporate America might want to take note: 32% of respondents revealed they’ve called in sick to work the day after the Super Bowl.
And those leading the charge are 39–54 year olds, with 46% having called in sick compared to only 16% of those 55+.
Still, even with potential consequences the next day, almost half of those surveyed (42%) plan to attend a Super Bowl party this year.
Some regions of the country are more into the party than others though, with 46% of those in the Southwest planning to attend a super soiree versus 35% in the Midwest.
The older you are the more likely you are to partake — 58% of Gen Xers are attending a Super Bowl party this year, versus 30% of Gen Zers.
And not every party is the same, but the survey asked which style of get together respondents prefer, and “potluck” came out on top.
That was followed by a family-friendly party with lots of kids, then a get together of die-hard football fans — who are 100% devoted to the game.
Results also revealed that the average Super Bowl party will include 14 guests.
“Party styles will vary, but one constant is always the food, which has a way of bringing people together — sometimes even more so than the game itself,” said Ciera Womack, Senior Marketing Manager, Farm Rich. “Guests are looking for a fun social time, as well as a great food spread, in addition to exciting football and the latest commercials.”
Chicken wings were found to be the top food fans say can’t be missed at a Super Bowl party (50%), followed by pizza (45%) and chicken bites (38%).
Results showed mozzarella sticks (33%) and chips (32%) should also be included for a successful party.
Seventy-four percent of respondents admitted to eating more during a Super Bowl party than any other sporting event or similar viewing party, and 42% owned up to eating too much food at a Super Bowl shindig.
That includes consuming six different snacks and an estimated 719 calories worth of food at the party, on average.
Interestingly, it’s the older generations who are consuming more on game day. Baby Boomers can expect to consume an average of 1,710 calories at a Super Bowl party alone — almost an entire day’s worth of calories for many.
This is compared to just 388 calories that Gen Zers expect to indulge in while watching the Big Game.
Sixty-three percent of people who have hosted a Super Bowl party begin planning the event even before January rolled around — with Gen Zers the most prone to last-minute planning.
The most shopped day of the week for Big Game parties? The Saturday before the Super Bowl weekend.
The average Big Game watch party host was found to spend seven hours planning for the event (men 7.4 hours vs. women 6 hours), and about an hour in the kitchen prepping and cooking food before the party starts.
This can lead to super spending as well, with hosts shelling out on average $114.75 in party costs, while attendees contribute and average of $94.88 — given the preference of a potluck-style party, hosts are leaning more on guests to contribute.
In the case of both attending and hosting, men reported spending at least 30% more than women, on average: $110.81 vs. $74.74 when a guest, and $133.83 vs. $91.83 when playing host.
When it comes to showing off Big Game plans, it’s men who enjoy the experience of sharing their event with others on social media most — 15% more men than women report attending Super Bowl parties for the social share.
Womack added, “These results show us that it’s really a team effort when it comes to pulling off a great party, and men more than ever are taking an interest … out-spending, out-sharing and out-planning women for the big game.”
TOP 5 REASONS FOR ATTENDING/HOSTING A SUPER BOWL PARTY
- The delicious food 56%
- For social reasons 54%
- The game itself 49%
- For family gatherings 46%
- The commercials 38%
TOP 5 MOST POPULAR SUPER BOWL PARTIES
- The potluck
- Family friendly (lots of kids)
- All die-hard football fans
- Guys’ gathering
TOP 10 SUPER BOWL FOODS
- Chicken wings 50%
- Pizza 45%
- Chicken bites 38%
- Mozzarella sticks 33%
- Chips 32%
- Veggies & dip 28%
- Loaded potato skins 28%
- Cookies 26%
- Fruit 26%
- Hot dogs 26%
TOP 5 SUPER BOWL TRADITIONS
- Spending it with friends and family 48%
- Attending a party/tailgate 48%
- Watching the commercials during the game 47%
- Playing flag football 46%
- Watching the halftime show 43%
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