Subscriber login Close [x]
remember me
You are not logged in.

CGA: ‘Venues must walk fine line between safety and experience’

Published:  12 April, 2021

Most consumers will remain sharply focused on safety despite a growing boldness about going out as lockdown restrictions ease, according to CGA’s latest Consumer Countdown to Reopening research.

Showing that the hospitality sector will have to provide "rigorous hygiene measures without compromising people’s experiences", the research found that over half (57%) of GB consumers think it essential for staff to wear protective equipment in order for them to visit a venue.

This is an increase of six percentage points from a similar survey in June 2020 carried out ahead of hospitality’s release from its first national lockdown. 

Moreover, the new research showed that the number of consumers considering Covid-specific medical information and the ability to pay online essential having jumped too, by nine and five percentage points respectively. 

However, the research also suggested that some Covid safety measures may be off-putting, with a fifth (21%) of consumers saying testing on entry would make them less likely to visit a venue, and 15% feeling the same way about the need to provide a Covid-related certificate.

Overall, more than half of consumers think cleanliness (57%) and feeling safe (51%) will contribute towards a good experience when the market reopens. 

But despite the focus on hygiene, other aspects of hospitality like the quality of food and drinks (57%), prices (50%) and range (44%) remained crucial too.  

“The research shows all venues will have to walk a fine line between safety and experience when they reopen in April and May,” said Philip Montgomery, CGA’s director of client services UK & Ireland. 

“It is encouraging to see that consumers are increasingly confident about mixing in the on premise, but rigorous hygiene protocols will still be needed to reassure those who remain cautious about Covid-19,” he said. 

On top of the “crucial fundamentals” like quality, price, range and service, this created a “very complex set of demands—but one that the sector is ready to meet”, he added. 

Earlier this month, CGA released research that showed consumers were set to prioritise eating and drinking out in their spending after lockdown, but remained cautious about longer term financial impacts of the pandemic.