Visiting a café or coffee shop was the most popular outing made by UK consumers since lockdown was eased on 4 July 2020, according to Allegra World Coffee Portal’s latest survey.
According to its survey of more than 3,000 UK consumers, 55% of respondents said they had visited a café or coffee shop since the national lockdown was eased, second only to the 69% who visited family and friends.
UK cafés “proved even more popular” than pubs, and bars and restaurants, according to the survey, with these destinations attracting only 28% of respondents.
Of those visited a café or coffee shop since lockdown, 43% purchased take-away only, 22% opted to sit-in, and 35% did both.
According to the latest research, 22% of respondents made between five and nine visits, while 21% made two visits and 17% made three visits.
The Portal also found that sales in coffee shops were boosted by the ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ initiative and the temporary VAT cut on food and drink, with 36% of consumers noting the scheme would encourage them to visit coffee shops more often, while 31% said the temporary VAT reduction would do the same.
While 47% of respondents said they felt safe physically visiting coffee shops, a further 34% said they felt unsafe, however, indicating that operators must “ramp up their efforts to enact, maintain and promote in-store safety measures”.
Allegra CEO and founder, Jeffrey Young said: “Cafés and coffee shops should be heartened by the wave of public support they have received since national lockdown restrictions were eased in July 2020.
“Nevertheless, this study indicates there are difficult times ahead for many businesses, and the extension of government support is likely needed to ensure the medium-term viability of the UK hospitality industry.”