How South African hobbies changed due to isolation

COVID-19 has forced most of South Africans to stay at home. The shutdown of points of interest, workplaces, schools, and universities has made a colossal difference in our daily lives. Analysis Team investigated Google search queries and created a ranking of the hobbies and activities which gained the biggest popularity in the times of pandemic.

Trapped at home

They took a closer look at the most popular hobbies and activities, such as cinema, books, games, and many others. They checked the frequency of search queries connected to these activities in March 2020 and compared them with March of the previous year.


After evaluating statistics, it turned out that all activities that require leaving home have become less popular. For example, concerts dropped by 79%, theatre by 67%, and cinema by 58%. South Africans also lost interest in photography, dancing, and home renovation.

The biggest increase of interest was noted for board games (245%). Followed closely by an interest in home gym (223 %). Online courses, such as Udemy have increased by 194%. So, there is a strong possibility that the uncertain situation in the labour market has made Internet users seek opportunities to gain additional qualifications.

Various creative activities and crafts, like crocheting (88%) or drawing (28%) have also gained popularity.

Among activities which increased by a relatively slow margin are listening to podcasts and painting (5% and 4% respectively).


The research is based on the changes in the popularity of various keywords in March 2020 compared with March of the previous year, according to Google archival data (through Google Trends).

About Picodi

Picodi is an international e-commerce platform which provides discount coupons for online stores. Founded in 2010 in Kraków, it currently operates in 44 countries and is listed in FT1000 ranking of Europe’s fastest-growing companies. In South Africa since 2015.

The Analysis Department was established in 2017. They analyse the market, consumer activities, prices of products and services, as well as wages.

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