10 Amazing Virtual Happy Hour Ideas (Drinks Not Included) for Guaranteed Fun in 2021

Missing a few months-worth of Friday night happy hours with the team? Why not create a virtual happy hour session with the team?

Just because most of us are social distancing and still working from home doesn’t mean we can’t have some remote team-building time. Thanks to the internet, video conferencing, and various interactive platforms, virtual happy hours — or as the millennials call it, “quarantini parties”—are now a thing.  

All you need to do is to set a time, get on a video call, and mix a couple of drinks (alcoholic or not, your choice), your virtual team is ready to get started!

Most people think virtual happy hours are for games and fun only or for those year-end virtual holiday parties, but if you really want to level up your team building game at your virtual meeting or virtual workshop, you can find virtual happy hour ideas that can actually help people bond.

Here are a few ideas you could apply on your next happy hour:

1. Never have I ever (engaging version)

This is a classic drinking game where people take turns announcing one thing that they have never, ever done, and anyone in the group who’s done it has to take a sip. And we’re going to level up.

What you need: 

  • Drinks of your choice
  • Get everyone to bring a sticky note (post-it)

How to set it up: 

  • Traditionally, this is done in a round-robin set up. But since this is all done online, you’ll have to decide on the order in your own way. One tip: you can have people type in “x” in the group chat at the same time, and whatever order they send it in is the order you’ll follow
  • You can choose to have a host or facilitator to keep track of the order, but this isn’t necessary as you can all just police each other
  • Ask everyone to put a sticky note (or a finger) over their camera
  • Whoever has done the “thing” has to take off their sticky note
  • The last one standing (still with the sticky note) wins!

2. Name that song

Are you a group of audiophiles? Well, why not challenge each other’s song recognition in your virtual happy hour! 

What you need: 

  • Drinks of your choice
  • YouTube on your mobile phone

How to set it up:

  • Take turns to play a song on your phone (so the audio goes into the mic nicely), and the others will have to guess
  • The winner gets a prize! Namely, street cred

3. Express your gratitude towards each other

templates for a team virtual happy

We don’t say it enough. Yet we know that there are scientifically proven benefits of gratitude: nurtures better health, enhances empathy and reduces aggression, and most importantly, opens the door for more relationships.

So why not take advantage of this?

What you need: 

How to set it up:

  • Set up a Toasty session and choose the ““Attitude of Gratitude” template
  • Invite your team to join
  • Follow the cards provided and express genuine gratitude
  • For the next team building, you can choose other Toasty templates provided

4. Netflix parties

Netflix is a great way to have some fun at team virtual happy hour.

Netflix and chill can be turned into Netflix and virtual drinks instead. Have a movie marathon or binge on the latest series over drinks, and make sure that you’re all watching the same thing at the same time with Netflix Party!

What you need:

  • A Netflix subscription 
  • The Netflix Party third-party extension installed in your browser (completely free)

How to set it up:

  • Once everyone’s downloaded the Netflix Party extension, you can simply go on Netflix and select a show
  • To watch the same show at the same time, click on the Netflix Party icon in your browser and get a shareable link
  • Share that link with friends and they should be redirected to the show you’re watching, and have access to a chatroom where everyone can comment while the movie’s playing
  • Play some fun party games, like taking a shot every time a character says a certain word

5. Have a themed virtual dinner party

Make the party fun and immersive by creating a theme. You can have everyone come in costume!

If you are looking for a good time to throw your dinner party, it may be smart to pick an upcoming holiday to celebrate virtually. Costumes work great for Halloween or get everyone in the festive spirit with a winter holiday-themed event with games and activities to play.

What you need: 

  • Drinks and foods of your choice
  • A costume, outfit, or prop that will match the theme!

How to set it up

  • Invite everyone to show up in a con call in themed attire
  • Vote for the best attire and he/she deserves a drink!

6. Classic virtual team game night

Board games aren’t limited to family get-togethers! There are virtual versions of some of your favorite board games, and there are also exclusively virtual board games to keep you preoccupied. 

What you need: 

How to set it up: 

  • Set up the game as per the instructions
  • Invite everyone to prepare their drinks and join the session

7. Virtual Pictionary contest

Skribbl is an easy-to-use platform

Pictionary is a lot of fun and it doesn’t require any set up, that’s why this is our go-to when we run out of ideas! There are many platforms with this game and we found Skribbl to be the best platform so far.

What you need: 

How to set it up

  • Invite everyone to a call on Toasty
  • Create a Skribbl game and share the link with the team
  • Play!
  • Tips: if you have a large team, use Toasty’s breakout room to form into small groups and then have multiple Skribbl contests running at the same time
  • Shall we have a final round for all group winners? You decide

8. Give a virtual house tour

WFH poses the rare opportunity to get to know each other outside of the office. The home decor gives away what your team members enjoy outside of their work life.

What you need: 

  • Preferably having everyone video conferencing via cellphone

How to set it up

  • Invite your team to give a tour of their living spaces

9. Can you recognize everyday objects close up?

Miro is so powerful that you can also use it to do various happy hour ideas.

A contest is always a good idea to bring people together. Did you know that when you zoom into everyday objects, they become difficult to be recognized?

Virtually, you can utilize a collaborative whiteboard to help you craft this experience.

What you need:

  • Toasty for video meeting (and its integration with Miro for whiteboard)

How to set it up:

  • Start a new session on Toasty
  • Click on the Miro icon on the sidebar to start a whiteboard session (create a free account if you don’t have Miro)
  • Go to this webpage and copy and paste some images to your Miro whiteboard
  • Get everyone to open up Miro once they’re on Toasty (one click on the sidebar)
  • Have everyone put their name and answer next to the image
  • Most correct guesses win!

10. True bonding through getting to know each other

Toasty's icebreaking cards can be perfect for virtual happy hour.

It is easy to play games together and treat it as an icebreaker. However, if you want to take this chance to increase trust, productivity, and teamwork of your team, icebreakers and discussion cards can help you drive towards that outcome. 

What you need: 

  • Toasty and its built-in activities

How to set it up

  • Create an account on Toasty
  • Plan a new session and use the existing card sets by Toasty or customize your own
  • Design the cards based on your objective: fun, sentimental, or wild?
  • Invite your team and take turns to share while everyone else listens
  • Watch your team’s bonding unfold

🍻  Virtual happy hour brings back the excitement and socialization back into your team and community. Toasty differs from most video conferencing platforms in that it doesn’t just allow breakout groups, it also has built-in activities like virtual happy hour ideas that you can pre-plan to easily engage a whole group of participants.