eastwest connect

Young people in small towns, waiting in line for coffee


It is learned on April 6 from Yiou that after fast food restaurants and milk tea shops, coffee shops have also become new landmarks in third- and fourth-tier small towns. Many Internet celebrity coffee shops located in county towns are crowded with young people who come to take pictures and check in every day.

A Luckin Coffee shop in the University Town area of Jinzhong City, Shanxi Province is one of them. Xiao Liang, a post-00s student who goes to school nearby, is not a loyal coffee lover, but he likes to come to the store to check in. “The decoration here is exquisite and the environment is not bad, it is very suitable to add some sense of ceremony to life.” Xiao Liang said frankly.

Some popular but small stores even often stage the famous scene of long queues. A Luckin Coffee clerk from a county in the eastern part of Henan Province told Yiou: “Usually customers have to queue for about an hour to pick up coffee at the store, and this year during the Spring Festival, they have to queue for two hours. It can sell more than 1,000 cups a day.”

Young people in small towns are obsessed with coffee, and online data is more intuitive than offline traffic. Meituan data shows that in 2021, coffee orders in third-tier cities nearly doubled year-on-year, and coffee orders in fourth- and fifth-tier cities increased by more than 250% year-on-year.

The coffee economy represented by Luckin is projecting a new background of consumption in small cities.