Consumers in Ireland 9% more concerned about everyday price rises than global average – Deloitte report

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Consumers in Ireland 9% more concerned about everyday price rises than global average – Deloitte report

Over three-quarters (78%) of consumers in Ireland are concerned about everyday price rises – 9% more than the global average...

Deloitte Ireland’s latest State of the Consumer Tracker survey also found that safety concerns among consumers in Ireland have increased significantly, while financial concerns remain persistent.

Deloitte’s State of the Consumer Tracker is a monthly survey which tracks Irish consumers’ attitudes towards personal wellbeing, financial concerns, travel and hospitality, transport and retail. The results are based on a survey of 1,000 consumers across 23 countries respectively (1,000 Irish consumers). The most recent data was gathered between 25 and 28 November.

Commenting on the latest results, Daniel Murray, Partner and Head of Consumer at Deloitte Ireland, said: “As we reach the final weeks of 2021, confidence among consumers in Ireland has unsurprisingly been dented by the continued spread of Covid-19, as well as the emergence of a new variant and the resulting personal and economic uncertainty. However, we have previously seen consumer confidence bounce back strongly from shocks such as this, due in no small part to the exceptionally high take-up of vaccinations in Ireland and the ceaseless adaptability shown by our businesses, despite uniquely challenging circumstances.

“It is clear that inflation is a real and growing concern for consumers in Ireland and this is another factor which will have a significant impact on confidence into 2022.

“All businesses should take note of the continuing trend towards online shopping, which is driven not only by safety concerns but equally by a preference for this channel, particularly among younger age groups. It would appear that this trend is not simply a temporary response to pandemic restrictions, even in sectors less traditionally associated with online, such as hospitality. Having an accessible, user-friendly online offering is absolutely key to the flexibility that all businesses now need to demonstrate as we head into 2022.”

Safety and financial concerns

Consumers’ concerns around the safety of in-person activities have increased significantly compared to the previous wave of research, conducted four weeks prior: 50% of consumers in Ireland feel safe going to a restaurant (down 17%); 63% feel safe going to a physical store (down 14%); 60% feel safe engaging with one-on-one services (down 14%); and 34% feel safe attending in-person events (down 15%). 40% say that they are increasingly replacing in-person experiences with digital ones (up 3%).
Financial concerns continue to persist among consumers in Ireland, with 25% saying they are concerned about making upcoming payments (up 1%) and 49% saying they are delaying large purchases (up 1%). 52% are concerned about their level of savings (down 1%), 2% higher than the global average of 50%; 44% say they feel optimistic that their financial situation will improve within the next three years (down 2%), 3% lower than the global average of 47%.

People in Ireland are working from home on average 3.4 days per week, which is higher than the global average of 2.7 days per week.

Spending intent and inflation concerns

Consumers in Ireland indicate an increasingly strong intent to shop online, with 41% intending to shop online for clothing and footwear over the next four weeks (up 5%), 41% intending to shop online for electronics (up 4%) and 35% intending to shop online for restaurants and take-aways (up 4%). This trend is largely being driven by the millennial age group and those who wish to avoid physical stores due to safety concerns.
78% say they are concerned about prices for everyday purchases going up, an increase of 4% since the previous wave and 9% higher than the global average of 69%. Groceries have seen the highest-perceived price increase among consumers in Ireland, with 59% feeling that the cost of groceries has gone up over the last month (up 5% on the previous wave), followed by clothing and footwear (40%, up 3% on the previous wave).

Travel, hospitality and tourism

Consumers in Ireland are feeling significantly less safe when it comes to travel, with 57% saying they feel safe staying at a hotel and 39% saying they feel safe taking a flight (both down 10% on the previous wave).

The number of consumers in Ireland planning to travel for leisure over the next three months has decreased, with 45% planning to stay at a hotel (down 6%); 28% planning to take an international flight (down 2%); and 25% planning to stay at private accommodation (down 4%). Overall, 55% intend to spend on leisure travel over the next month (down 3%).
24% say they would select a leisure destination because it is near a major attraction (down 3% since the previous wave). 46% say they would likely select somewhere because it allows them to socially distance (up 8%), while 21% say they would select somewhere because it has no health-related screening requirements (down 3%).

10% say they will likely travel for business over next three months (down 1%); 20% feel that technology has replaced the business travel that they might normally do, with this figure remaining the same since the last wave. Of those intending to travel for business, 23% say they will do so in order to build client relationships (up 10%), while 17% will travel for on-site visits and monitoring (up 5%).

37% of consumers in Ireland are planning to cut back on their use of public and shared transportation over the next three months, up 6% on the previous wave.

21% plan to buy a vehicle over the next six months, down 2%. Of those, 38% plan to buy a new vehicle, up 4%. Of those planning to replace their vehicle, 12% are doing so because they want a more fuel-efficient vehicle (up 1%) while 9% are doing so because they want to switch to electric (up 2%).

Article Published: 21/12/2021