Consumers Brace to Cut Back on Restaurant Dining Over Holidays

As the holiday season pressures budgets, most consumers plan to reduce their spending on restaurant dining.

By the Numbers

The PYMNTS Intelligence study “The Credit Economy: How Consumers Are Approaching Holiday Spending and Travel,” created in collaboration with i2c, drew from a survey of more than 3,300 U.S. consumers to understand their behaviors and attitudes related to holiday spending.

Where consumers plan to cut spendingThe study found that 79% of consumers plan to cut back on buying food from restaurants this holiday season. Most likely to do so are baby boomers and seniors, 82% of whom reported plans to reduce their spending in the category, while 71% of bridge millennials said the same.

The Data in Context

Restaurants, for their part, are looking to capture more of consumers’ holiday spending despite pullback by tailoring their menus to meet omnichannel demand.

In an interview with PYMNTS published Monday (Nov. 20), Randy Ramdass, operational manager of New York restaurant HAAM, noted that the eatery has tailored its menu items to be efficient and reheatable so that it can perform better on digital ordering channels.

“[We’ve learned to] be efficient on the food items, so that will when it’s reheated, it will be quick and taste good, and all of those attributes of high-quality food will be there,” Ramdass said. “… We’ve embraced [digital]. It’s made a positive impact for us, where from a productivity standpoint … it’s just simplified and streamlined everything.”

Media giant Disney, for its part, is leveraging deals on its restaurant offerings to entice consumers back for the holiday season.

The company announced in September the offer of a “Disney Dining Promo Card,” promising consumers who purchase a specific vacation package at select “Deluxe” resorts that they will get $1,000 in dining credits for visits at select times, including for much of the holiday season. Plus, Disney also shared a lower-value offer for select non-Deluxe resorts.