The number of restaurant goers in Hungary has drastically dropped after the COVID pandemic – the Hungarian Central Statistical Office wrote. The main reason is obviously the sky-high prices, which reached astronomical levels due to the rising operating expenses.
According to portfolio.hu, in H1 2023, traffic in Hungarian restaurants decreased by 5.5% compared to pre-pandemic figures. László Kovács, the president of the trade union of the Hungarian caterers (MVI), believes that restaurant owners increased prices disproportionately in light of the sudden jump in domestic demand. However, that strikes back because people have less spending power due to the decrease in real wages.
The president said that restaurant traffic is thin at the beginning of the week, and it rather picks up towards the weekend. The good news is that utility, energy and food prices began to ease, however.
Nevertheless, Hungarian restaurant prices reached astronomical levels in Hungary. An average meal costs around HUF 10,000 (EUR 26), but it can even rise to HUF 20,000 (EUR 52), even if you do not dine at a high-class place. Let alone to mention luxury and Michelin-star restaurants. Mr Kovács reported changing consumer trends: people no longer spare money on drinks or coffee. Instead, they go out to eat less frequently, but then they treat themselves to more.
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