British consumers plan to continue to eat out over the next six months despite ongoing economic uncertainty, research has found.
According to a survey by business advisory firm Deloitte, diners anticipate a 1.4% increase in the number of times they will eat out for the remainder of the year.
"Eating and drinking out is much less dependent on overall consumer spending and confidence than it used to be," said Jon Lake, corporate finance director in the licensed retail group at Deloitte.
"The findings demonstrate just how resilient British consumers are and their reluctance to reduce the frequency with which they go out."
The Taste of the Nation report, which questioned 3,000 consumers, predicts that diners in the South-east of England plan to eat out 5.8% more often than they do currently, while in the North there's a 2.7% anticipated decrease.
Coffee and sandwich shops now account for a third of meals consumed out of the home, eclipsing a visit to the pub (24%) or bar (16%). Fast-food outlets, meanwhile, account for 14% of eating out, ahead of casual dining (7%) and formal dining (4%).
"While the coffee and sandwich shop is the most popular of destinations, currently, the main threat to the pub sector comes from bars," added Lake.
By Kerstin Kühn
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