More diners are eating out but are spending less, says survey

23 July 2009 by
More diners are eating out but are spending less, says survey

The eating-out market is still suffering in the recession and, while diners are starting to eat out more, they are increasingly spending less, research has found.

The Quickbite survey from market analyst Horizons, which questioned 1,000 consumers, found that more than two thirds (68%) are planning to eat out as much in the coming year as they did in the past.

However, more than half (54%) of respondents said that they are more price-conscious now than they were six months ago.

Spend on alcohol has most been affected, with half of diners saying they now spend less on drinks and more than a quarter (28%) ordering wine by the glass instead of buying bottles to reduce costs.

The survey also found that 40% of diners are now ordering fewer starters and desserts, while almost a third have started to opt for sharing dishes.

Horizons' development executive Peter Backman said the survey revealed an insight into the changing nature of consumer spending.

"While it seems people are continuing to eat out, they are looking for ways to reduce the cost, taking advantage of money-off vouchers and the heavy discounting going on among restaurant operators," he said.

"They have also changed the things they are ordering in restaurants - sharing more, drinking wine by the glass and cutting out starters and desserts."

London restaurants see first green shoots of recovery >>

January takings drop at 60% of London restaurants >>

One-quarter of diners can only be tempted by discounts >>

By Kerstin Kühn

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