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Deloitte Taste of the Nation: Generation Y: the social junkies - they just can’t stop going out

4 July 2012

  • Generation Y going out 29% more often than 12 months ago;
  • Going out to eat and drink considered a lifestyle not a luxury for Generation Y;
  • Consumers in the South East going out the most, buoyed by London;
  • Men go out 60% more often than women.

Consumers from Generation Y (18-34 year olds) are defying the challenging economic conditions by going out to eat and drink 29% more often than at the same time last year, according to the latest Taste of the Nation report from business advisory firm Deloitte, and BDRC Continental.

The latest wave of survey results reveal the average UK consumer is going out for food and drink on 19.8 separate occasions per month, up 13% versus the same time last year.  This is being driven by Generation Y, which is now going out 32 times a month, up from 25 a year ago.  That’s twice as often as 35-54 year olds (16 times a month) and more than three times as often as the Baby Boomer (55+ years) generation (10 times a month).

Jon Lake, a corporate finance director in the licensed retail group at Deloitte, comments: “The going out market remains resilient owing to Generation Y’s more carefree lifestyle and a touch of ‘austerity fatigue’.  They expect to go out even more over the next six months, which demonstrates just how ingrained going out is in their lives.  It is a lifestyle, not a luxury and has become embedded in their culture.  

“Generation Y also tend to be heavy users of social media and are highly adept at seeking out online offers to fuel their lifestyle.  Operators have been very successful in targeting this particular audience and should continue to do so as they are long-term customers.”

Whilst consumers across all the regions are going out more now than they were 12 months ago, those in the South East are going out significantly more often than consumers elsewhere in the UK: 23 times a month, up 18% year-on-year, buoyed by the London market.  Consumers in the North are going out 19.8 times a month (up 8% year-on-year), those in the Midlands 18.6 times a month (+19%) and in the South West 15.6 times a month (+1.9%).

In previous surveys, men indicated they intended to reduce their going out behaviour, however they actually went out more: 24.4 occasions in a month compared to 20.3 last year and 60% more often than women (15 times a month).  Both the men and women surveyed now predict they will go out more over the coming months, influenced by the prospect of longer summer days and the hope of better weather.

The latest Deloitte Consumer Tracker (Q1 2012) revealed consumer sentiment was improving slightly, but a lack of disposable income was preventing a sustained recovery in the consumer economy.  The modest rise in the UK’s retail sales figures in May indicate the consumer economy is looking a little brighter this year than last.  

Lake adds: “Consumers are still happy to allocate discretionary spend to eating and drinking out.  Operators can be hopeful the positive mood of consumers will continue beyond the Diamond Jubilee, into the forthcoming Olympic summer.”


Notes to Editors

About the report
Taste of the Nation
produced by Deloitte, together with BDRC Continental, explores the trends and patterns of consumers’ eating and drinking habits out of the home.  It takes into consideration every time they purchase drink or food from a pub, bar, coffee/sandwich shop, fast food outlet, restaurant or club, whether it be a sit-in or takeaway occasion, shedding light on the size of the market and its opportunities.  

The survey was completed by a nationally representative sample of 3,000 British adults, during April 2012, and comprised strong representation from all UK regions (excluding Northern Ireland), as well as different age and gender groups.

About Deloitte
In this press release references to Deloitte are references to Deloitte LLP, which is among the country's leading professional services firms.

Deloitte LLP is the United Kingdom member firm of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (“DTTL”), a UK private company limited by guarantee, whose member firms are legally separate and independent entities.

Please see for a detailed description of the legal structure of DTTL and its member firms.

The information contained in this press release is correct at the time of going to press.

About BDRC Continental
BDRC Continental is the UK’s largest independent market research agency. Established in 1991, the company has built an unrivalled reputation as a full service consultancy with specialist expertise across a number of sectors including business to business, financial services, hotels, meetings & hospitality, media & advertising, internet & telecoms, Government & not for profit, culture & leisure and tourism, travel & transport.

Member of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited

Media contacts

Celine Gordine-Wright
Deloitte LLP
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+44 (0) 20 7007 6384

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