An easy guide to the national days that hospitality businesses should tap into

February 8, 2021

There is any number of weird and wonderful days that we all see on social media and on the news - National Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day, anyone? - but how do you know what’s coming up? And what’s the point of getting involved as a hospitality operator? 

Why should you tap into a national day?

  1. Inspiration

First and foremost it’s inspiration for new content and offerings. In any normal year, people are looking out for different experiences, but in 2021 even more so due to the prolonged lockdown. And the recent ‘sell-out’ cook-at-home Valentine’s Day kits are proof. Have a look through the national days coming up and see what grabs your attention. Could you create a new package to purchase, run a giveaway or host a cookalong? Could you simply highlight your favourite dish that relates to that day, or unveil a secret recipe?

  1. Engagement

New, different and inspiring content is going to help drive engagement and help reach a wider audience.

  1. Giving customers another reason to spend with you

Friday takeaways might already be a ‘thing’ in one household, but, for example, pancake day is a Tuesday and if you have a unique package on offer to help them celebrate it then you’re giving your customers a reason to spend with you on a different day.

  1. Showing brand personality

National days are a brilliant way to get your brand’s personality across. Can you be cheeky with your offering? Do you want to be fun or casual? Or is it a serious, high-end offer? Or is it a cause you’re supporting close to your employee’s or customer’s hearts that deserves serious attention? Are you wanting to show that you’re a brand with purpose?

  1. Brand awareness

Tagging a national day means people outside your usual audience will stumble upon your content more easily. They might be a burger aficionado but unaware of your establishment, that you offer burgers on your menu, or that you have a new package for National Burger Day. Your social post that uses #NationalBurgerDay might grab their attention.

  1. Potential for PR

Journalists regularly write round-ups of what is happening on national days. Google your favourite national day and hundreds of articles by both national and regional journalists are going to crop up. If you have a PR team, they’ll likely already be maximising these opportunities, but even if you don’t, you’re increasing the likelihood of PR exposure. If a journalist happens to be searching for things to include in your area then there’s a chance they’ll spot your offering. If it drives online coverage and includes links then it will support SEO too.

Top tips for maximising national day activity

  • Plan ahead so you don’t miss the boat

Add the most relevant dates to your diary and always try to look ahead by at least a month. Perhaps schedule a regular monthly internal meeting to have a quick chat about what’s coming up in the next few months.

  • Utilise all your channels

Has your website been updated in plenty of time? Have you scheduled a newsletter and some social media posts? 

  • Optimise your social media posts

Ensure you’re using the right hashtags and have appropriate lifestyle imagery, graphics, gifs or videos. Consider placing a bit of social media budget behind it. Budgets might be tight (or non-existent) at the moment, but if it’s an extremely popular national day, putting a little bit of social media ad spend behind your national day post can help you get cut through the noise.

  • Limited offers

If it’s a package, consider promoting how many of these are available and for how long - if there are only 100 kits available it or it’s a ‘one day only’ offer, it might just prompt someone to make the purchase then and there.

Your calendar of dates

Here are some of our favourite hospitality-related national days. The majority of these dates stay the same date each year, but some will change, like Mother’s Day. Let us know what your favourite national day is in the comments below.

2021
February

3rd - Yorkshire Pudding Day

9th - National Pizza Day

9th - National Bagel Day

12th - Chinese New Year 

13th - Galentine's Day

14th - Valentine's Day

16th - Pancake Day

17th - Random Acts of Kindness Day

18th - National Drink Wine Day

22nd - National Margarita Day

22nd-7th - Fairtrade Fortnight 

25th - National Chilli Day

27th - National Strawberry Day


March

1st-7th - British Pie Week

4th - World Book Day

8th - International Women's Day

8th-14th - National Butchers Week

14th - Mother's Day

17th - St Patrick's Day

20th - International Day of Happiness

25th - International Waffle Day


April

2nd-5th - Easter weekend

1st - April Fools Day

11th - Cheese Fondue Day

12th - Ramadan begins

21st - National Tea Day

23rd - St. George’s Day

23rd-30th - British Beef Week


May

3rd - Early May Bank Holiday

8th - World Fairtrade Day

10th-16th - National Vegetarian Week

11th - Eat What You Want Day

12th - Ramadan ends

13th - International Hummus Day

14th - National Biscuit Day

15th - World Whisky Day

17th - World Baking Day

23rd-30th - English Wine Week

24th-6th - British Tomato Fortnight

25th - National Wine Day

28th - International Burger Day

31st - Spring Bank Holiday

TBC - British Sandwich Week


June

All month - LGBT Pride

1st - World Milk Day

4th - National Doughnut Day

4th - National Fish and Chips Day

5th - World Environment Day

5th-11th June - Great British Pea Week

12th - International Falafel Day

12th - World Gin Day

14th–27th - National BBQ Week

14th-18th - Healthy Eating Week

15th - National Beer Day

18th - International Sushi Day

19th - National Martini Day

19th-27th - National Picnic Week

20th - Father's Day

25th - National Cream Tea Day


July

All month - Ice Cream Month

17th - World Emoji Day

7th - World Chocolate Day

16th - National Cherry Day

17th - Hot Dog Day

24th - National Tequila Day


August

1st - Yorkshire Day

6th - International Beer Day

9th-15th - Afternoon Tea Week

13th - National Prosecco Day

16th - National Rum Day

19th - International Photo Day

26th - National Burger Day


September

All month - Sourdough September

All month - Organic September

1st-7th - Love Lamb Week

1st - National Tofu Day

5th - International Bacon Day

7th - World Salami Day

13th - International Chocolate Day

18th-3rd - British Food Fortnight

24th - World’s Biggest Coffee Morning (in aid of Macmillan)

13th-19th - Negroni Week

26th - National Dumpling Day

5th-20th - Scottish Food and Drink Fortnight

26th - National Rice Week

30th - Summer Bank Holiday


October

1st - World Vegetarian Day

1st - International Coffee Day

4th - National Taco Day

7th-12th - National Curry Week

8th - World Egg Day

10th - World Porridge Day

14th-19th - Chocolate Week

14th-19th - National Baking Week

16th - World Food Day

21st - National Apple Day

25th - World Pasta Day

31st - Halloween

TBC - UK Coffee Week (charitable initiative)

TBC - UK Sausage Week


November

All month - World Vegan Month

1st - World Vegan Day

3rd - World Sandwich Day

4th - Roast Dinner Day

5th - Bonfire Night

TBC - Great British Game Week


December

2nd - English Breakfast Day

5th - National Pigs in Blankets Day

6th - National Gazpacho Day

20th - National Sangria Day

24th - Christmas Eve

25th - Christmas Day

26th - Boxing Day

31st - New Year’s Eve


2022
January

First half of month - January sales

All month - Veganuary

All month - Dry January

1st - New Year’s Day

17th - Blue Monday

25th - Burns Night

30th - National Croissant Day