While restaurants across the country have re-opened for indoor dining after closing due to the pandemic, many consumers are still opting for takeout instead.
Despite the easing of stay-at-home orders, some consumers remain wary of spending time indoors in public spaces. In fact, 43% of consumers feel unsafe eating inside of a restaurant, according to a survey by Bid-On-Equipment, a platform that lets companies buy and sell equipment and used machinery.
But that’s not stopping patrons from supporting their local restaurants and taking a break from cooking themselves, as nearly two-thirds (65%) said they are enjoying takeout more frequently than they did before the COVID-19 crisis.
Takeout is part of the weekly routine
Consumers order takeout on average 2.4 times per week, according to the survey. They also spend an average of $67 per week in the process.
A majority of respondents (77%) said they leave a tip when they order takeout, with millennials and members of Generation X being most likely to tip the most with an average of 15%.
Some consumers are also ordering alcohol to go in states that have made it legal to do so. Among respondents, 33% said they have ordered alcohol to go since the start of the pandemic.
Consumers who plan to keep using takeout services for the foreseeable future might also consider leveraging credit cards that offer rewards for food delivery.
Consumer showing support for local restaurants
Consumers are also being very conscious about where they spend their takeout dollars. More than half (59%) said they are more likely to spend their money with local restaurants rather than large national chains. Not only does that help support the local economy, but it falls in line with an earlier survey that showed that consumers have been making an effort to show their support for local businesses throughout the crisis.
Consumers have also been supporting local restaurants in other ways.
Nearly half (47%) said they have been tipping their local restaurants more. That was followed by:
- 26% who have left positive online reviews for local restaurants
- 23% who have donated to local dining establishments
- 22% who have made a conscious effort to place larger orders
- 20% who have been promoting local restaurants on social media
- 15% who have bought and worn merchandise from local eateries
- 13% who have purchased gift cards from them
Some consumers venturing inside restaurants
Overall, 1 in 3 respondents said they have eaten inside of a restaurant since restaurants reopened. Millennials were most likely to give indoor dining a try, with 40% of them doing so compared to:
- 34% of Gen X
- 32% of Generation Z
- 27% of baby boomers
As part of their research, Bid-On-Equipment also analyzed Google search trends to get an idea of whether certain parts of the country were more interested in the idea of takeout than others. It found that consumers who live in the Northeast were most likely to search for takeout options while consumers who live in the South appeared to show the least interest in the idea.
Methodology: In July, Bid-On-Equipment surveyed 2,000 consumers between the ages of 18 to 78. Note: The Bid-On-Equipment survey used age cutoffs similar to those of Pew Research, which describes Gen Z as those ages 18 to 23, millennials as those 24 to 39, Gen X as covering the ages 40 to 55 and baby boomers as ages 56 to 74.