CivicScience keeps asking “is this the new normal?” when it comes to consumer comfort levels. Amid rising COVID cases across the country, new data point to “yes.” Consumers don’t appear to be too concerned about cases going up as of yet: the percentage of those who feel “very concerned” dropped to lows not seen since June of last year (10%) this week. At the same time, comfort resuming normal activities continues to increase across most measured categories, including going back to work (+5pp), going out to eat (+2pp), and going to major public events (+2pp). 

With summer right around the corner, plans to travel in the next month have increased by two percentage points overall this week (driven mostly by those who plan to travel without flying). 

Plans to dine in at a restaurant declined by three percentage points this week but remain relatively high at 47%.

We’re observing declining restaurant patronage as a growing percentage of people feel “very concerned” about gas and energy prices.

In fact, among those who frequently eat at restaurants, those who report they’re “very concerned” about gas and energy prices are much less likely to eat out several times a week.