|Horizons reports Christmas dining-out decline|
|Written by Carol Emmas|
|Friday, 25 January 2013 15:33|
Consumers cut back on their spending this Christmas and fewer people dined out over the festive period, according to foodservice analysts Horizons.
The QuickBite YouGov survey showed that across the two-week Christmas period 68% of respondents dined out – a fall on last year's 72% over the same period. One third (31%) of adults admitted to not having eaten out in the past two weeks, due to the "expense".
Emma Read, Horizons' director of marketing and business development, said: "Christmas trade is vitally important to the foodservice sector and, while some of the chains may have had stronger bookings than others, overall this survey shows that consumers were eating out less this Christmas as a cost-saving measure."
The QuickBite survey also notes the ongoing popularity of pub restaurants, which now account for 20% of respondents' eating out occasions, up from 19% in June last year.
While the number of people eating out decreased year on year in London over the Christmas period (74% in 2012 vs 71% in 2013), the Midlands saw an increase in the number of people eating out (from 71% in 2012 to 75% in 2013).
These findings conflict with the recent Coffer Peach Business Tracker report that showed like-for-like sales across pubs and restaurants for the six weeks up to January 6, were up 2.1% on the same period 12 months ago, with total sales for the festive period (including new openings) ahead 4.7% among the 24 companies in the Tracker sample.
It also noted regional differences with the trading period showing a stronger performance in London than outside the M25 and said, over the period as a whole, pubs performed better than restaurants, although both saw a like-for-like increase on last year.
Earlier in the month, Horizons predicted the foodservice sector was set to reverse last year's sales decline to grow modestly this year. Managing director Peter Backman said after years of slow decline, he predicted that the market had reached the bottom, or would reach the bottom early this year, and that consumer confidence and spend on eating out would start to rise again.