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US consumers are picking up new hobbies in lockdown

US weekly consumer tracker: May 26th 2020

With movie theaters, shops and restaurants out of action, US consumers are finding other ways to entertain themselves, and these hobbies are here to stay

US consumers expect the crisis to go on for almost a year.

With the world seemingly at a standstill, the constant battle to remain active and engaged is something that is testing us all.

But with nowhere to go and no one to see, how are we motivating ourselves to keep busy and stay positive?

For many US consumers, the best way to keep spirits lifted is picking up a new hobby. Cooking, daily exercise or learning how to use new technology are all things that are getting Americans through the crisis.

Perhaps it’s doing something that you used to love doing but haven’t had the time to do recently, or maybe a friend has inspired you to learn a brand-new skill. It looks as though these newfound hobbies will last well after the lockdown ends too, with many saying they will keep them up.

With restaurants closed and top chefs posting their tips, tricks and recipes on social media, it’s no wonder that nearly half of consumers say they will cook at home more. Perhaps new skills in the kitchen are necessary, as over a third (35%) are planning on spending less money on eating out after the lockdown ends.

Online shopping and browsing is also keeping retail lovers sane while stores are closed, with 35% saying that they will shop online more than they did before when the crisis ends.

With so many gym classes and personal trainers taking to social media to keep the country fit and healthy for free, almost a third (30%) say that they will work out at home more in the future. This is good news for the nation’s health, but could be a bad sign for gyms and exercise classes – as whether people will renew their memberships is a big question.

How will US consumers’ habits change post lockdown?

US consumers expect the crisis to go on for almost a year, and are planning to spend less money on things they once would have after it. The travel industry is expected to continue to suffer, with almost half (46%) expecting to spend less on lodging and airfare.

The many new hobbies that have been picked up during lockdown might be the reason almost four in ten (36%) plan to spend less on out of home activities.

However, a less cautious contingent of consumers are ready to get out and about, with 20% planning on actually spending more on out of home activities and eating out than they were before.

Consumers are still uncomfortable with formerly “normal” activities, such as attending a party (51%) or going to the mall (45%). After lockdown ends, 38% will continue to socially distance and 23% will avoid sit-down restaurants. Though the duration of these behavioral changes is still unknown, it is clear that things will not return to normal after all lockdowns are lifted.

Weekly US Consumer Coronavirus Data Tracker

Our weekly survey and tracker offers the opportunity to ask a range of questions directly. With 2,000 respondents each week, the tracker provides brands and businesses with the audience needed to inform even the most challenging questions that our current environment presents.

If you would like to know more, access additional data analysis or would like to ask your own questions, click here.

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