NRA: 63% of adults plan to eat out during holidays

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Millennials are the top demographic to use restaurants during the holidays as a way to avoid crowded grocery stores during the holidays, per a National Restaurant Association survey of over 1,000 U.S.

Dive Brief:

  • Over the next few weeks, two-thirds of adults plan to eat out while 48% said they plan to order takeout or delivery, per a survey from the National Restaurant Association released Wednesday.
  • When it comes to take out, 66% of consumers said they would order an entire meal while 89% said they would order a main course, sides (86%), appetizers (74%) or dessert (63%), according to the association’s survey of 1,010 adults in the U.S. 
  • Takeout and delivery remain “critical components of the guest experience” across all demographics, Michelle Korsmo, National Restaurant Association president and CEO said in a statement. 

Dive Insight:

While all generations continue to turn to restaurants for their meals at home, there are generational divides on how and why consumers are eating out. The association found that 82% of millennials take into account takeout and delivery options when choosing a restaurant compared to 53% of baby boomers.

Millennials (75%) are more likely to use a restaurant over the holidays to avoid grocery stores during busy times compared to 65% of Gen Z and 57% of baby boomers. However, baby boomers at 72% were the least likely to order from a restaurant during the holidays while 86% of Gen Z consumers said they would likely dine in or order takeout. 

Thanksgiving already proved to be a busier time for independent restaurants, which saw a 5.8% increase in the number of transactions and an 8.2% in sales on Thanksgiving compared to 2022, according to SpotOn data emailed to Restaurant Dive. Average checks for SpotOn’s restaurant clients were up over 2%. The company also noted over 1,000 Christmas menu items were added to independent restaurant menus between Nov. 19 and 28. Most of these (52%) were beverages. 

Consumers are also expected to tip more during the holidays, according to a survey of over 2,000 adults conducted by The Harris Poll commissioned by DailyPay. About two-thirds of Americans said they plan to give bigger tips during the holiday season compared to the rest of the year, according to the report emailed to Restaurant Dive.

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