How the Pandemic has Changed our Eating Out Habits
The pandemic affected our lives in so many different ways – working from home, home-schooling, food shopping online just to mention a few. Many industries were affected by the rules and had to close down temporarily or permanently.
One industry that suffered was the restaurant industry as people couldn’t eat out for a long time. It’s taken some time, but business is getting back to normal with a big increase of people dining out since the start of 2022 as restrictions eased.
My husband and I are foodies and love dining out when we can so we’re very happy that things are more normal now and that we can enjoy meals out again as a family or with friends.
We have noticed that most restaurants now require booking in advance and sometimes there’s a fee for no-shows which makes perfect sense for business as it helps ensure people show up for their bookings.
The experts in delicious food and great deals, tastecard, have conducted some research on how the Covid-19 pandemic has changed our eating out habits and found some interesting things. Generally, people are more specific with what types of foods they’re looking for. Japanese food has become lots more popular with 222% more people searching for Japanese restaurants this year. The interest in Italian restaurants has more than doubled and ¼ more diners are looking for Chinese restaurants after the pandemic. Similar trends are true for Indian, Spanish, and French cuisine. The search for vegan restaurants is back to over its pre-pandemic numbers too.
I search for restaurants in a similar way myself, thinking about what kind of food I fancy and what the people I’m dining with like as well as the restaurant needs to cater for everyone in the party. I’m often the tricky one to cater for as I’m a vegetarian who doesn’t eat eggs so it’s sometimes hard to find something suitable on the menu in some restaurants.
I also look out for any special offers on the menu like set menus or offers for certain days of the week. The pandemic was tough financially for many and, with the current climate of sky-high energy bills, saving money where you can is important. By being a tastecard member, you can enjoy amazing restaurant discounts. On average, tastecard members save around £19 per meal out which is brilliant! If you eat out once a month, that means you can save yourself £226.56 per year. As a member, you can also enjoy lots of other perks such as attractions and cinema deals. It’s a wonderful membership for savvy foodies who love to enjoy meals out at different restaurants.
The experts have also found that, though weekends are busy again, there’s been a dip in mid-week customers, except for in the school holidays. Personally, we would rarely visit a restaurant on a weekday as we have young kids and it’s just easier for us to have meals out on weekends when we can do so a bit earlier in the evenings to avoid clashing with bedtime. When the kids are older, I’m sure we’ll be more flexible with this.
We’re so happy to have a more normal life again where we can enjoy life’s pleasures such as cosy meals out with our loved ones, enjoying delicious food.
This post was created in collaboration with tastecard, but all thoughts are my own.