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Consumers positive about Eat Out to Help Out scheme

Published:  07 September, 2020

Consumers were very happy with the levels of hygiene and cleanliness they encountered during the Eat Out to Help Out scheme, according to an extensive survey conducted by CGA, UK Hospitality and Yumpingo.

Some 95% of those surveyed were satisfied with the level of hygiene and cleanliness they encountered, while 88% were satisfied with how their venue’s team followed hygiene practices.

The confidence consumers felt in the hospitality sector meant that 85% said they would used the scheme to try new restaurants.

The success of the scheme in attracting business back to the sector is reflecting in the findings that around two-thirds – 67% – of all those eating out from Mondays to Wednesdays in August did so because of the offer.

Uptake was spread across service times, with 26% up take at lunchtime, 23% in mid-afternoon, 33% in early evening and 15% late evening.

The scheme was predominantly used by the 18-to-34 demographic, who made up 41% of customers. The 35-to-54 age group comprised 40%, while just 17% of over-55s took advantage of the offer.

However, Eat Out to Help Out customers gave the overall experience a Net Promoter Score of +36%, significantly below the +52% average of all visitors since hospitality reopened.

This may be more to do with declining consumer satisfaction with the eating-out experience while social distancing measures are in place than the scheme itself. NPS overall fell from 78% in the first week after re-opening on 4 July to 46% by mid-August.

Charlie Mitchell, research and insight director at CGA, said. “Eat Out to Help Out has shown people that they can have a safe as well as pleasurable and good value experience in restaurants and other venues, and has been a particularly good stimulus for visits by older people who were previously hesitant.

“It remains to be seen how many of the millions of Eat Out to Help Out diners return in September, but signs of rising expectations show that operators will have to stay super-vigilant on safety and other standards to keep people coming back for more.”

A number of restaurant groups are self-financing an extension of the half-price offer to incentivise consumer visits during September.

The ‘We Hear You’ survey is based on 14,424 consumer responses gathered at 943 venues between 4 July and 31 August.

The full report can be downloaded here.