11th February 2020


A UK wide study into the nation’s eating habits has revealed a mere 28 percent of British families still gather round the table for their evening meal.

In fact, according to the data, almost half (43 percent) of families opt for TV dinners “most evenings”. 

The poll also revealed as many as one in ten (9 percent) of adults claim they are so tired, they often eat dinner in bed.

Overall, seven percent eat their evening meal in the office before leaving work, while a time-poor one in 20 (5 percent) have eaten their evening meal in the car on the commute home.

The survey of 2,000 adults by Travelodge which operates 200 restaurants in its UK hotels, also revealed that eight in 10 Britons believe TV dinners are a good option for our busy modern lives.

Almost three quarters (73 percent) believe children and parents eating separately can also make life easier all round.

Despite the decline in family dinner times, 43 percent of adults said eating together is the best way to bond and feel close to their family.

Yet 23 percent admit that when they do come together to break bread, the main topic of conversation is how tired everyone feels, and 15 percent say that all they talk about is feeling stressed out.

The data revealed that more than one in twenty (7 percent) British families don’t talk at all while eating dinner together, as everyone is glued to their phones. 

Shakila Ahmed, Travelodge Spokeswoman said: “Our research shows screens are invading our valuable family mealtimes and this is not just at home. Our Bar Café team members working across our 200 UK hotel restaurants are also seeing a rise in customers dining at breakfast and dinner with their devices and catching up with work, playing games or watching a movie.”          

The study found that the average UK family eats at around 7pm, with 25 percent claiming it is old fashioned and uncool to eat before 5pm.               

An organised 44 percent of the adults polled said they stick to some sort of routine or rota when preparing family evening meals.

A ‘national meal menu’ emerged from the study, with spaghetti bolognaise most likely to be eaten on a Monday (27 percent), pizza on Tuesday (18 percent), lasagne on Wednesday (18 percent), cottage pie on Thursday (17 percent), fish and chips on Friday (23 percent), take-away on Saturday (20 percent) and the iconic roast dinner on a Sunday (49 percent).


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