The Get Your Drink On mobile app helps users grab a beer, cocktail or glass of wine for their buddies, wherever they are. Since people can’t go out for a drink because of the coronavirus outbreak, GYDO is helping venues compensate by providing a digital gift card platform.
Founder Ryan Williams said all venues have to do to launch their gift cards is sign-up for GYDO. The only registration requirement is an active Facebook business page.
“Once somebody has downloaded the mobile application, they can send a designated amount to any venue. The venue gets the funds immediately. Obviously with the whole shelter-in-place it’s not exactly easy to visit the respective venues,” Mr. Williams said.
He explained that when the venues started to close, the GYDO team began brainstorming ways to support the venues facing financial challenges.
“I can either buy myself a digital gift card and redeem it at a later date or, even better, I can buy my friend a digital gift card. That might mean maybe it’s your birthday and I might buy you a digital gift card from one of the wineries or breweries that have joined GYDO instead of say a box of chocolates or bouquet of flowers,”’ Mr. Williams said.
He continued that the gift card, purchaser and the venue need to be on GYDO to send the gift card, but the recipient of the gift does not. If the recipient is on GYDO the gift will show up in their app, if they are not they will receive a scannable QR code that they can use to redeem their gift.
“We now have the ability for a contactless ability for those who want to pay by card or something along those lines,” Mr. Williams said.
There are 25 venues in the Santa Barbara, Goleta and Carpinteria areas that support GYDO, including Night Lizard Brewing Company, Skyenna Wines, Brass Bear Brewing, Island Brewing Company and Rincon Brewery.
GYDO launched last November from their offices in Carpinteria. Mr. Williams said the local beer and wine scene has embraced their service.
“With all this COVID-19 happening, making the change and incorporating the gift card process has enabled friends to still maintain that emotional social connection with one another. We like to be able to go out, socialize with our friends and family. That’s not really possible, but at least we can buy our friend a drink, a growler (jug) or a bottle of wine. We’re helping to maintain that social connection with your friends and family,” Mr. Williams said.
Mr. Williams said that he is originally from South Africa and the idea behind GYDO came to him during a call with family members who live on the other side of the world.
“I’m South African, and my nephew was here, he is South African as well. He had a scholarship to go to university in Los Angeles. One time we were at Island Brewing Company and it was his birthday. We were FaceTiming our family in South Africa and they were wishing him a happy 21st birthday, but there was nothing more they could do. Wouldn’t it have been so cool if they could buy him a drink at Island Brewing Company? That sort of got the creative juices flowing,” Mr. Williams said.
He explained that, on a normal night out, users can log into GYDO and order a friend a drink from an online menu provided in the venue’s account page. The payment goes directly to the venue and users can add a message or a selfie to the gift.
GYDO is free for businesses to use. For more information visit https://gydo.me/ or call 805-284-5213. Instructions on how to register as a user or business owner are available on the GYDO YouTube channel.