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Americans Love Dining Out

When it comes to eating out, Americans aren’t saving the experience just for special occasions. In fact, a new survey suggests that most consumers who dine out do so multiple times per week. Hospitality solutions provider Fourth surveyed 1,000 American adults who say they eat out, whether they dine in restaurants, pick up food to go, or have a meal delivered. Most of them (56%) reported eating out at least 2 to 3 times per week, while 10% said they eat out 4 to 6 times each week, and 6% said they eat out every day.

– When it comes to getting restaurant meals, respondents with an income of between $50,001 and $60,000 ate out the most, at an average of just under 4 times per week. However, those in the bracket just below – earning between $40,001 and $50,000 – actually spent the most money, at an average of $117.82 a week, or roughly 12%-15% of their annual income.

– Age appears to be a factor in how often people eat out, as the survey data suggested younger consumers spend more on prepared foods than do older generations. Millennials (defined in the survey as those aged 25 to 34) spent the most dining out, averaging $95 per week. While 43% of millennial respondents said they ate out for convenience, 49% said they eat in restaurants because it provides a social setting for them to spend time with friends and family. As for other age groups:

  • 18-24 year olds spent $53 per week on average
  • 35-44 year olds spent $75 per week on average
  • 45-54 year olds spent $48 per week on average
  • Those aged 55 and over spent $42 per week on average

– When it comes to gender, the men polled typically ate out 3.45 times per week, compared to the women, who ate out 2.15 times per week. Men were also more likely to eat out everyday than women (10% versus 2%), and they spent an average of $82 per week dining out, compared to women, who spent $69.

– The survey also examined why consumers eat out at a restaurant: 47% of respondents selected “social, spending time with family and friends” as the main reason, followed by “special occasion” (41%), “it’s convenient” (40%) and “I enjoy the atmosphere” (33%).

– The survey asked respondents to select their favorite celebrity chef. According to the results, Gordon Ramsay took the No. 1 spot with 11% of the votes, followed by Anthony Bourdain (7%) and Bobby Flay (6%).

– When determining a server’s tip, 58% of respondents cited “friendly and pleasant demeanor” as the most important factor followed by “attentiveness” (50%) and “accuracy of order” (44%).

– 30% cited “rude restaurant service” as their biggest frustration when eating out at a restaurant.