Anticipation Builds Ahead Of Big Events

Nearly two thirds of consumers are looking forward to the full return of large-scale live events CGA’s latest Consumer Pulse survey shows.

Festivals, concerts, nightclubs, sporting events and other big occasions will all be crucial elements of the recovery of food and drink operators and suppliers this summer, and 63% of consumers say they are now ready to get back to them.

Fans of sporting events are the most confident, with nearly nine in ten (89%) comfortable enough to return either as soon as restrictions are lifted (22%), as long as precautions are in place (27%), or with caution (40%). Confidence is nearly as high among clubbing event visitors (85%), festival-goers (84%) and concert and gig attendees (82%).

As the nightclub sector prepares to return for the first time in well over a year, the sector could benefit from a loyal core of clubbers. More than two thirds of typical 18 to 24 year-old (69%) and 25 to 34 year-old (68%) nightclub visitors say they plan to visit more or as often than they did before COVID.

CGA’s consumer research has revealed rising levels of confidence as hospitality reopened for indoor service—though it also notes that some consumers are likely to remain cautious for a while. Three in five (59%) of those who typically visit large-scale events before the pandemic said they would still do so, but would initially feel cautious or seek reassurances through precautionary health measures.

The gradual return of live events is a welcome landmark in the COVID recovery for consumers, operators and suppliers alike, and we must hope that the roadmap to a total resumption isn’t disrupted,” says Florence Brun, CGA’s consumer research executive. “Our survey shows many people have badly missed big communal gatherings, and since these consumers tend to be higher On Premise spenders than average, efforts to attract them back could be well rewarded. But it is also clear that event organisers are going to have to work very hard to demonstrate to those with COVID concerns that they are in safe hands.”