Singapore residents willing to spend more on staycations, food delivery: Survey

Sixty-three per cent of the 450 participants surveyed said they would maintain or increase the frequency of staycations. ST PHOTO: NG SOR LUAN

SINGAPORE - Singapore residents are willing to spend more on staycations and go for them more frequently, according to a survey conducted by the Singapore Management University's (SMU) Institute of Service Excellence.

Sixty-three per cent of the 450 participants surveyed said they would maintain or increase the frequency of staycations while 71 per cent said they would spend the same amount or more.

This comes in spite of the concerns some of them had about the cost as well as how some hotels are used as coronavirus quarantine facilities.

These findings were released on Wednesday (Dec 2) together with the Q3 Customer Satisfaction Index of Singapore results for the food and beverage (F&B) as well as tourism sectors.

For the index, researchers surveyed 2,500 local residents between July and September this year.

They also found that more than three in five restaurant customers are ordering more takeout or food delivery because of the Covid-19 situation.

The head of research and consulting at the Institute of Service Excellence, Mr Chen Yongchang said this bodes well for those who expanded their operating models to include takeout and deliveries.

"This is especially critical for operators who have traditionally targeted the office and tourist crowd, where demand has reduced significantly," he added.

Customers are not only ordering food delivery in droves, but they are also more loyal to restaurants when they do so.

Those who order food delivery or takeaway are also more likely to patronise the establishment again and are more tolerant of changes in prices, according to the latest report.

Restaurant customers who opted for food delivery scored 73.8 points for their loyalty while those who ordered takeaway scored 73.1 points.

In contrast, restaurant customers who dined in recorded a score of 68.9 points only.

This is the first time the study has gone online to collect data on the F&B and tourism sectors. Data from previous years was collected from participants face to face, so the results cannot be directly comparable to this year's.

Hotels, which formed a sub-sector under tourism in previous years were not studied this year, as tourist responses could not be captured because of the Covid-19 travel restrictions.

Instead, local attractions such as the Singapore Zoo, Gardens by the Bay and Universal Studios Singapore were featured.

Researchers studied the factors which would prompt customers to make a repeat visit to an attraction they had recently gone to.

Satisfaction with F&B options as well as the range of activities and exhibits at the attractions were the most important factors influencing customer loyalty.

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