Chicago-based Mintel reports that consumers are still watching their discretionary spending. In fact, 60% of restaurant-goers report that the recession has changed the way their family spends money. The research also indicated that 24% of restaurant-goers plan to spend less at restaurants this year than they did in 2010.
However small, 10% do say they plan to spend more at restaurants in 2011, and consumers with the highest household incomes are most likely to make this claim. Of restaurant-goers who plan to spend more when they eat out, the most popular destination is a casual dining restaurant, with 67% reporting as much. Price may be a major deterrent to increasing restaurant spending, with 63% of restaurant-goers saying it’s too expensive to eat out regularly. Not everyone is cutting back. Some plan to stick with the status quo. Of those surveyed, who have visited a restaurant in the past month, 66% say they plan to spend the same amount when dining out this year as they did last year.