More than half (56%) of 18 to 24-year-olds would prefer to order food and drink online, even after they have been vaccinated, according to the latest Go Technology report from Zonal and CGA.

It found that three quarters (76%) of consumers had pre-booked to eat or drink out at a hospitality venue since summer 2020, with 45% ordering on mobile devices when eating out.

According to the report, with online food ordering now more commonplace, it anticipates that consumers will expect increasingly streamlined and connected experiences, with a quarter interested in the idea of tracking their orders on their phones, while a fifth would like to be able to create a bar tab, or repeat orders, using their phone.

Alison Vasey, group product director at Zonal, said: “The fast-growing role that technology is playing in hospitality is undeniable. While some tech solutions were implemented as a necessity during the midst of Covid-19 crisis to facilitate reopening, our new research shows that customers’ expectations now are that tech will help to enhance their hospitality experiences even further.”

The number of consumers using mobile to browse menus and pay has also increased during the last 18 months – up from 23% to 32%, and 11% to 18%, respectively.

Karl Chessell, CGA business unit director - hospitality operators and food, EMEA, added: “There is no doubt that a lot of the change we have seen over the last 12 months is here for good. Businesses that can identify the technology that is genuinely beneficial rather than gimmicky, and weave it together with the best traditional elements of hospitality, should feel confident about bouncing back when hospitality returns in the spring.”

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