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UK pub and bars predicted to recover fully by 2024

Published:  23 September, 2021

The UK pub and bar market is set to recover to 64% of its pre-pandemic value in 2021 to £14.8bn, Lumina Intelligence has revealed, with full recovery to follow by 2024, possibly exceeding 2019.

The industry suffered a catastrophic 2020, when the pandemic wiped £13.9bn or -61% off the value of the pub and bar market. According to Lumina Intelligence’s new UK Pub & Bar Market Report 2021 however, by 2024, the UK pub and bar market will have not only recovered its Covid-related losses, it will actually exceeded its 2019 market value.

Year-on-year, the total UK pub market is expected to grow by +51.8% in 2022, reaching a value of £22.4 billion. Thereafter growth will stabilise at around the 2% mark ahead of reaching a value of £23.4bn in 2024, beating 2019’s £23bn, predicts the Report. 

“Despite a catastrophic last 18 months, the UK’s love affair with pubs remains intact and will see the market not only fully recover by 2024, but also outpace value growth in the total eating out market,” said Katherine Prowse, senior insight manager at Lumina Intelligence.

“The legacies of the pandemic present significant opportunities to operators and will remain key to market recovery. Delivery accounted for 50% of pub/bar occasions during lockdown and offers operators the chance to broaden its consumer base. The adoption of digital has resulted in a quicker, more seamless customer journey, which many customers are now used to and prefer.

“As well as offering a better experience, digital ordering and payment gives operators access to valuable data that allows them to understand their customers better.”

Lumina also previously predicted a roaring recovering for the full out of home sector, including restaurants.

It said that a total of £3.1bn growth is expected for the UK eating and drinking out market from 2022-24, with pubs and restaurants set to claim a £1.3bn share.