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Survey highlights customers’ concerns while dining out


August 26, 2020
By Canadian Pizza

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Toronto – Canadians feel safer eating at independent restaurants and men feel safest eating at a buffet, suggests a survey of 1,000 people by Andie.work, a free artificial intelligence online and mobile app designed to help consumers avoid COVID-19 exposure.

The company recently conducted the survey of 1,000 to uncover and address their greatest concerns while dining out.

Key findings:

  • Canadians feel significantly safer eating at independent restaurants (35.5 per cent) versus fast food (23.0 per cent) or chain restaurants (11.1 per cent).
  • Canadians feel safer on patios (21.7 per cent) than indoor dining rooms (10.2 per cent).
  • Over half of Canadians (56.8 per cent) are still ‘only eating at home.’
  • Men really want buffets back! A whopping 73.4 per cent of respondents who said they felt the safest eating at a buffet during COVID were men versus only 26.6 per cent of women.
  • Women are a considerably more concerned about lineups (56.1 per cent) and utensils (55.8 per cent) as touchpoints when eating out than men are at 43.9 per cent (lineups) and 44.2 per cent (utensils).
  • Men are the most concerned about ‘exposure to other patrons’ at 58.3 per cent vs. 41.7 per cent (women).

Touchpoints that concern them most are exposure to other patrons, followed by bathrooms, lineups, exposure to wait staff, the food itself and utensils.

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Canadians have real reservations about restaurants

Asked to identify their biggest barriers to eating out right now, nearly half said potentially catching COVID. Exposure to other patrons, inability to afford eating out now and long lineups with other patrons were their top additional concerns.

Canadians are worried about touchpoints

Touchpoints that concern them most are exposure to other patrons (32.2 per cent), followed by bathrooms (22.0 per cent), lineups (12.6 per cent), exposure to wait staff (10.4 per cent), the food itself (9.6 per cent) and utensils (9.3 per cent).

A whopping 73.4 per cent of respondents who said they felt the safest eating at a buffet during COVID were men versus only 26.6 per cent of women.

Andie.work is expanding its functionality, which is designed to keep Canadians safe when they dine-in at a restaurant or bar or visit a patio. The company is now live with a unique Critical COVID ratings system.

The app predicts the shortest wait times at liquor, grocery store, pharmacy, clinic, gas stations, and big-box stores. It recently added an eight-category ratings protection system.

Through Andie.work’s “Dining Defender” update, Canadians that use the app will be able to review ratings from other diners and rate their own experiences in real time. Diners will rate the critical COVID touchpoints of utensils, bathrooms, staff cleanliness, food preparation, physical distancing, safety rules enforcement, guest PPE and availability of hand sanitizers and share those ratings in the app.

“We see this active ecosystem of diners on the app during COVID as a big step forward in protecting Canadians who choose to eat out,” said Dan Snow, chief marketing officer.

The Andie.work app curates a list of 1,100 restaurants, patios and bars in Canada. With restaurant density and wait times refreshed every five seconds, the app lets users know how busy prime restaurant and patio destinations are, helping them avoid both the busiest customer times and close quarters waiting in line.