The History Of Happy Hour


There is a time during the day when joy, that draught of liquid happiness, can be bought at a discount. Every bar in the world honours it and every patron waits for it to enjoy their drinks with the knowledge of a purse not quite so much lighter as it might have been otherwise. In the best of establishments, the name itself is a misnomer, as it lasts for two or more, giving us all a chance to find that joy for a pittance.

Happy Hour Day takes place every year on 12 November and celebrates this time and the moments of pure bliss it brings to its patrons.

We are all too familiar with the term, but where did this term first begin and how did it come to spread across the world?

The first instance of the term is difficult to trace, as it was a common reference throughout the centuries, most notably in King Henry V by Shakespeare, where he states “Therefore, my lords, omit no happy hour that may be given furtherance to our expedition.”

As a reference to a particular time of entertainment, however, it can be traced to a much more specific date, in 1913 it originated from the United States Navy. It took only the length of World War I for the term Happy Hour to refer to all periods of indulgence, including smoking, wrestling, boxing, music, movies, and dancing.

As a reference to a point of drinking, however, it made its appearance during the prohibition, the term “Happy Hour” referred to that time spent at a speakeasy before retiring to restaurants no longer able to serve alcohol.

How to Celebrate Happy Hour Day

happy friends The History Of Happy Hour

Low angle view of happy start up team toasting to their success.

Happy Hour Day is celebrated in the most wonderful and joyous of ways, retiring to your favourite establishment and partaking of the offerings of their Happy Hour. Be it food or drink, the simple hours spent in these places with friends and family can be a bright spot in an otherwise dark day or a tradition where friends gather under a common roof.