Fall reported by dining survey

The number of times people dined out in the run-up to Christmas hit an all-time low, according to a new Quickbite survey from market analyst Horizons.

It reported that 72% of consumers claimed to have eaten out in the first two weeks of December – a 3% decrease on the previous year’s figures and the lowest of any Christmas reading. The consumers surveyed had eaten out an average of 2.7 times in the first two weeks of December, considerably less often than the average of 3.7 times during the same period the previous year.

The survey showed that establishments being hit the hardest by the current economic downturn are coffee shops, pubs, Indian and other takeaways, with sit-down restaurants in the mid and premium sectors being the main beneficiaries.

“We are seeing a flight to quality with people eating out less but spending more. Spend per head at pound;12.46 is the highest ever recorded,” said Horizons’ managing director Peter Backman.

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