Thanks for Visiting!

Register for free to get the full story.

Sign Up
Already have a Placer.ai account? Log In

The Evolution of Dining in 2022

by 
Shira Petrack
 on 
April 21, 2022
The Evolution of Dining in 2022

Our latest white paper dives into the dining sector. We examined how this sector is evolving, tapping into community resources, and adapting to consumer desires – and looked at the challenges the industry may be facing. Below is a taste of our findings. The full report can be found here.

Defining the “Out” in “Eating Out” 

Inflation rates have recently begun to rise worldwide, and the United States is feeling the impact. Gas prices have also hit historic highs over the past few months, and consumers have been adjusting their dining habits accordingly. These changes may not only impact how often people go out to grab a bite, but also how far they are willing to drive for their meal. We took a closer look at the data to see how these factors may be driving dining trends.

Gas Prices Impact Dining Habits

While many restaurants suffered early on in the pandemic, one chain’s mode of operation proved very successful. As their name implies, SONIC Drive-In offered customers the best dining experience by COVID standards: With many people reluctant to potentially expose themselves to COVID when dining out, eating in one’s car suddenly proved highly appealing. But as consumers have gotten used to life with COVID and with the new challenge posed by rising gas prices, the draw that once brought in customers may now be keeping them away, with February 2022 seeing the smallest Yo2Y increase in SONIC Drive-In visits since 2020. 


Shorter Drives to the Drive-In 

And it’s not just overall visits that have fallen – Q1 2022 also saw a dip in the distances customers are traveling to reach SONIC Drive-In venues. This can be seen by consumer behavior data from the top two SONIC Drive-In locations in New York, which shows a significant rise in the share of visitors driving less than five miles to reach the venue. 

In Q1 2022, 41.1% of visitors traveled less than five miles to reach the  East Meadow, NY location – up from 38.4% in Q3 and Q4 of 2021. In North Babylon, NY, 44.8% of visitors traveled less than five miles to reach the restaurant in Q1, up from only 38.2% of visitors in Q3 2021. And in both locations, the share of visitors traveling 10 miles or more has dropped significantly. This means that the drop in overall visits is likely coming from SONIC Drive-In patrons living further away who decided to forego their trips to the drive-in until prices level out. 


Diners Prefer Staying Local 

The fast food category is not the only one feeling the impact of high gas prices – full service restaurant visitors are also driving shorter distances to get to their destinations. For example, The Cheesecake Factory in Pittsburgh, PA saw the share of visitors traveling less than five miles increase to 25.6% in Q1 2022, compared with just 22.4% in Q3 2021. 

Similarly, the number of visitors driving less than five miles to reach The Cheesecake Factory in Cleveland, OH has risen from 20.4% in Q4 2021 to 22.5% in Q1 2022. At the same time, the share of visitors who had previously been willing to drive over 30 miles to dine at The Cheesecake Factory dropped from 35.7% to 31.1% for Pittsburgh and from 33.3% to 25.6% for Cleveland between Q3 2021 and Q1 2022. 

These numbers seem to indicate that more and more, customers who are looking to dine out are opting to stay local when choosing where to eat.

For more insights into the evolution of dining in 2022, download the full report here

Get 3 brand & industry
breakdowns every week

Subscribe to the newsletter

Great! Prepare your inbox for data-driven insights...
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Get a Demo

Please enter your first name
Please enter your last name
Please provide a valid email
Please enter your email
Please enter company name

Thanks for reaching out!

One of our experts will be in touch soon

Try Placer.ai Free
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Peeking Behind The Curtain: Movie Theaters in 2023 and Beyond
Diving Into Brick-and-Mortar Eyewear
Getting Into Gear: Exploring The Auto Part Industry
Recapping Valentine’s Day 2024 Foot Traffic Trends
Fitness: A Strong Start to 2024
Dutch Bros. Continues To Percolate Visits
Super Bowl 2024: Placer.ai’s Postgame Foot Traffic Analysis
CAVA & sweetgreen Are On the Rise
Hats Off For Off-Price
Who Is Shopping at Malls?
Drilling Down Into Home Improvement
Walmart, Target, Costco & Superstore Space 2023 Recap
Catching Up With Shake Shack and Wingstop
Something To Chew On: Demographic Shifts at Steakhouse Chains
Placer.ai Office Index: Looking Back at 2023
Recapping RBI & Yum! Brands’ 2023 Foot Traffic Performance
Placer.ai White Paper Recap – January 2024
Who Shops at Anthropologie and Urban Outfitters?
Three Taco Chains to Watch in 2024
Starbucks and Dunkin’: 2023 in Four Data Points
Who Visits CVS and Walgreens?
Fashionably Frugal: Apparel in 2023
Catching Up With Fast Food
The Grocery Sector in 2023: An End-of-Year Recap
3 Mall & Shopping Center Trends for 2024
Bakery Chains Rising To The Top
Placer.ai and Esri Partner to Deliver Geospatial Analytics
Tampa Tourism Trends
Going For The Green: The Changing Dynamics Of Country Clubs
Christmas Day Dining Recap
Major Urban Shopping Districts – Holiday Season Recap
Placer.ai Office Index: December 2023 Recap
Recapping the 2023 Holiday Shopping Season
Placer.ai White Paper Recap – December 2023
7 Retail & Dining Segments to Watch in 2024
Diving Into Holiday Season Favorites
Super Saturday and Christmas Eve Eve: A Winning Combination
3 Budget Grocery Chains Finishing 2023 On a High Note
Making It In America: International Chicken Chains Bring The Heat
Domestic Tourism at a Glance: A Q3 2023 Roundup
Five Pizza Chains On The Rise
Jewelry Brands Taking Advantage of the DTC Opportunity
Secondhand News: Kids' Thrift Shops
Recapping 2023’s Dining M&As
MetLife Stadium Kicks Off Football Season
Placer.ai Office Index: November 2023 Recap
Small Coffee Chains Brewing Big Success
Placer.ai White Paper Recap – November 2023
Thanksgiving Travel 2023 Recap
Checking in With Nike and Lululemon
Black Friday 2023 Retail Recap
Starbucks’ 2023 Holiday Menu & Red Cup Day Performance
Turkey Wednesday 2023
Who Attended the 2023 Pickleball Championship? 
Three Surprising Holiday Shopping Trends
What’s in Store for Ulta Beauty This Holiday Season?
Best Buy and Department Stores: A Holiday Deep Dive
Discount & Dollar Stores: Strength Toward The End of the Year
The State of Off-Price Retail: Discounts Seal The Deal
Placer Mall Index Recap: October 2023
Placer.ai Office Index: October 2023 Recap
Retail Corridors Ahead of the 2023 Holiday Season
California, Here Gap Comes
Checking in With Home Improvement
Getting Into the Glasses Game: Warby Parker Takes Over
Fitness Positioned for a Strong 2023 Finish
White Paper Recap: October 2023
Coffee Giants Brewing Up Business
Popeyes and Burger King Lead the Way
Diving into Yum!
Looking Ahead to Black Friday 2023
Blockbusters Drive Movie Theater Comeback
Crocs and Boot Barn: Shoe-Ins for Success
McDonald’s and Chipotle's Winning Recipe
The State Of Steak: Checking in With Texas Roadhouse
Pleasant Pastimes: Pickleball Potential Proves Potent
Who’s Driving Downtown Manhattan’s Weekend Revival?
Diving into Downtown Manhattan Foot Traffic Trends
Rite Aid: Rightsizing Right
Major League Soccer: Its Die-Hard and Casual Fans
The Anchor Recap: September 2023
Placer.ai Office Index: September 2023 Recap
Placer Mall Index Recap: September 2023
September White Paper Recap
The Consumer Habits of College Students
JCPenney: Rightsizing and Revitalizing
Pent-Up Demand Ahead of October Sales Events
4 Strategies Retailers are Using to Drive Traffic to Their Venues
5 Key Regional Grocery Players Impressing in 2023
Upscale Kitchenware Trending Up
Costco Finds More Room for Growth
Four C-Store Chains Making an A-Grade
National Parks + Outdoor Summer Activities
Diving Into Darden: Summer 2023 Update
The Summer Event Effect
Messi: Massive in Miami
Looking Back on Back to School 2023
The Anchor Recap: August 2023
Placer.ai Office Index: August 2023 Recap
Placer.ai Mall Index: August 2023 Recap