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Is it really time to ditch face masks?

Is it really time to ditch face masks?

Face mask

Now that legal requirements for mask-wearing have been removed, many operators are scratching heads, wondering what the most reasonable way to proceed might be.

So, we thought we’d ask you for your thoughts around ditching masks in hospitality venues, to find the right balance between enjoying newfound freedom and feeling safe.

To help our clients and the hospitality industry navigate this, we have shared the below results with them from our latest survey, where we asked you what situations masks should still be worn, and what would encourage you to visit a hospitality venue right now.

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Is it the right time to stop compulsory mask-wearing?

You seem to think not, as over 70% of you said it’s too early to lose the face mask. Women are slightly more cautious than men, where that figure reaches 72%, whereas only 63% of men say that now is not the right time.

No particular trend emerges from an age perspective, however the most cautious age group is 56-65, with 83% believing it’s too early. The least cautious age group are millennials (26-35), where that figure is only 62%. To our surprise, 76% of (18-25) however, said you would prefer mask-wearing to continue.

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In what instances should mask wearing still be compulsory?

The vast majority of you are adamant that mask-wearing should continue in transport, such as trains (94%) and airplanes (91%). Many also believe it should continue in supermarkets (80%).

A large percentage of you believe that theatres and cinemas should still enforce facemasks (65%), however you’re divided on whether they should be worn in pubs, restaurants, and cafes (50%). Only 41% believe mask-wearing should continue in hotels.

Men overall are far laxer with mask-wearing than women, with percentages lower for men in every category across the board. In terms of age, there is a broad consensus that masks should be worn in supermarkets, trains and airplanes, however, when it comes to hospitality, theatre and cinemas, millennials want restrictions far less than older age groups and still surprisingly, also Gen-Z (18-25) consumers.

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Staff / Team members and face masks

When it comes to what hospitality staff members should do in regard to masks, 78% of you want them to continue to wear them - in fact 58% said that it would discourage you from visiting a venue where staff weren’t wearing face masks. 36% of you wouldn’t be swayed either way however, and interestingly, a small percentage (6%) would be more likely to visit a venue if staff weren’t wearing face masks!

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Covid Safety Tracker

Your confidence around visiting hospitality venues in regards to covid safety in general, has taken a big dip and declined for the first time since Christmas 2020! Our latest survey results reveal that on average, you feel 7.19 out of 10 safe about heading out for food/drinks. That number was 7.88 in June, 7.55 in March, 7.51 over Christmas last year, and 7.07 in October 2020.

Overall results show that you, our mystery guests think it’s a little too soon to be ditching masks and feel uneasy about restrictions lifting. We already know that many hospitality operators are enforcing that staff wear masks and now that we have shared these survey results with the industry, we are sure that they will be looking at further ways to make guests feel comfortable.

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