More than half of diners are spending less on alcohol when they eat out and more than a third are ordering fewer starters and desserts than three months ago as they look to save cash, according to the latest survey.
Despite 68 per cent of people telling Horizons’ QuickBite survey that they intended to eat out more often over the next year, the signs are that they are spending less per meal with drinks and extras suffering.
Fifty-four per cent of women and 49 per cent of men said they were ordering less alcohol when dining out with 28 per cent of respondents admitting to ordering wine by the glass than the bottle, while 39 per cent of consumers are sharing starters and desserts rather than ordering their own.
Peter Backman, Horizons’ development executive, attributed the change to diners’ need to save money rather than cutting back for health reasons.
“While it seems people are continuing to eat out, they are looking for ways to reduce the cost, taking advantage of money-off vouchers and the heavy discounting going on amongst restaurant operators,” he said.
“They have also changed the things they are ordering in restaurants - sharing more, drinking wine by the glass and cutting out starters and desserts.”
The survey also found that the nation’s top five favourite places to buy a meal outside the home currently are Chinese restaurants, pubs, fast food outlets, Indian restaurants and fish and chip shops.