Over half of pub-goers find the pub just as relaxing now compared to pre-lockdown


September 30, 2020


Mel Frazer-Reid

With a quarter (22.5%) thinking it is even more relaxing now.

With pubs, bars and restaurants in England now having to close by 10pm under new government restrictions, it’s fair to say that this provides a challenge, with some bars/pubs estimating that 10pm and later accounts for 60% of their takings*.

But popping to the local for a drink will surely continue to be an essential way for people to relax and enjoy themselves in these times, if our research is anything to go by.

Startle’s research into the post-lockdown pub experience and atmosphere reveals that over half (55.1%) of pub-goers find the pub just as relaxing as pre-lockdown, with a quarter (22.5%) thinking it’s even more relaxing now.

Also, two thirds (64.1%) of those who find the pub just as relaxing or more so now identify as regular pub goers (before lockdown), see graph 1.

Graph 1

However, over half (54.7%) of those who find the pub just as relaxing or more so now will not visit the pub as regularly as pre-lockdown.

While two thirds (66.1%) of those who think the pub is more relaxing now are male, see graph 2.

It certainly a challenging time, but Deloitte suggests pubs won’t achieve growth simply by just offering food and drink, and a focus on convenient use of technology is key to the quality of overall experience**.

Embracing the combined power of music and technology to shape behaviour is a smart and strategic way to engage your customers.

Graph 2

Thoughts from our CEO, Adam Castleton:

"It seems that regular pub goers are getting used to the new post-lockdown experience, but with many of them indicating that they're not planning to visit as frequently as before, there's more work to do. We have been working with pub companies such as Greene King who have been investing in Covid-safe digital entertainment that can really make a mark on a great evening out."

This hub is going to be the place to be for consumer research in retail and hospitality, so make sure to bookmark it, follow us on social, write it on a post-it note or whatever it is that you do. You could also sign up and subscribe to our mailing list, which is easy like Sunday morning.

Surveys carried out July 2020. Sample size (n) >1000 people, UK Nat. Rep. with 95% confidence level & margin of error of +/- 5%.

*The Guardian article: Coronavirus: pubs and restaurants across England to be forced to shut at 10:00pm. 21st September 2020.

**Deloitte: Experience is everything (2019).

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