Understanding consumer needs

Your guide to being the venue of choice this festive season

In May we conducted some bespoke consumer research to find out how consumers are really feeling about heading out into foodservice venues over the festive period this year. We asked 2,000 UK consumers, who celebrate Christmas about their plans and expectations during the run up to Christmas, Christmas Day itself and New Year’s Eve.

For even more key consumer insight into Christmas 2022 download the full report here.

Christmas this year is all about enjoying moments with loved ones

A third of people intend to socialise as much as possible this festive season, still making up for lost occasions. This rises to 58% in 18-34 year olds! And now that Covid restrictions have been lifted, people are feeling more confident about going out. Only 1 in 10 are still cautious about making bookings this year.

The cost of living crisis means Christmas looks different again this year for most people

With only 1 in 5 people saying that ‘Christmas won’t be any different this year’ many people are impacted by the cost of living crisis we’re experience. So operators need to communicate value for money on their festive menus. Focusing on dayparts associated with lower spend (e.g breakfast) could encourage people that are more cost conscious to head out to your venue.

Divided opinions means that there is demand for traditional Christmas dinners but also a range of alternative options

1 in 4 people say they get bored of eating several Christmas dinners so they’d prefer different options when eating out. But 1 in 4 also say that they’d happily eat several Christmas dinners over the festive period, it’s what Christmas is all about. So there is opportunity for both, think about adding festive twists on classic dishes like burgers.

Bookings and plans for the festive season will ramp up from October

Most people will book from October onwards, but one third will start to book in November making it the most popular month to make plans. As the world cup starts in November this is a great opportunity to promote your Christmas offering with the increased amount of footfall.

Over a quarter of people plan to head out on Christmas day, whether for food or drinks

16% of people intend to eat out at a restaurant, pub or similar venue this Christmas Day. But this rises to 38% of under 25’s! And 12% of people plan to head out for drinks, providing an upselling opportunity with canapes, bar snacks or even a Christmas day brunch menu?

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