• As the scheme comes to an end, Yolt data found users spent up to six-times as much eating out on Mondays, when compared to the weekends
  • Amid calls for the government to extend the scheme, the data shows that during August, Monday – Wednesday became ‘the new weekend’ for many

Yolt, the smart-thinking money app, has revealed new data which demonstrates that the ‘Eat Out To Help Out’ scheme created a surge in eating out on Mondays, with users spending up to 6 times more at the start of the week, when compared to the weekend. Tuesdays and Wednesdays also saw an uptick in spending on food and drink as people took advantage of the government scheme, spending up to 3 times as much at the beginning of the week.

The “Eat Out to Help Out scheme” was a plan to help restaurants (including those in hotels, leisure centres and holiday parks), cafes, bars and pubs that serve food, canteens, food halls with a seating area and members’ clubs, among others after a tough year. The scheme run between 3 and 31 August and had shown impressive results, with more than 84,700 restaurants signed up for Eat Out to Help Out.

Restaurants claimed more than 100 million meals under the scheme, worth £522m, figures likely to rise as outlets have until the end of September to claim, Treasury figures show.

Likewise, users spent on average 2.5 times as much during the beginning of the week than they did at the weekend, but Mondays were consistently the most popular day for claiming the discount.

As well as a rise in the amount spent, Yolt’s data also found that, in August, the number of transactions related to eating out went up Monday-Wednesday. On average, users made up to 7 times more ‘eating out’ transactions when compared to the weekend.

Pauline van Brakel, Chief Product Officer at Yolt, comments: “The ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ scheme was put in place to stimulate consumer spending in the hospitality industry, and our user data demonstrates that people have been supporting the initiative. However, most telling is that this uplift has not led to an increase in spending towards the end of the week, and the question remains: now the scheme has concluded, will restaurants be able to survive? The desire to enjoy eating out is still there, but consumers are naturally cautious of overspending and seem to be looking for ways to make savings.”

Likewise, Chancellor Rishi Sunak said: “From the get-go our mission has been to protect jobs, and to do this we needed to be creative, brave and try things that no government has ever done before. Today’s figures continue to show Eat Out to Help Out has been a success. I want to thank everyone, from restaurant owners to waiters, chefs and diners, for embracing it and helping drive our economic recovery.”

A large number of restaurants have also decided to continue with the same scheme, albeit without Government help, throughout September to continue encouraging customers to have a meal out. Some of these are JD Wetherspoon, Hall and Woodhouse, Drake & MorganComptoir Libanais and Franco Manca or The Real Greek among others.