The average person, According to the Office of National Statistics, saved £495 every month during lockdown. Experience tells us that office workers could have saved significantly on their travel costs, whether they’d been using public transport or private cars.
Data on the other hand tells us that working from home for all but essential workers resulted in fewer lunches bought from their normal venues that were largely closed in any event. You just have to look at the numbers of jobs being lost in the large cafe and takeaway food chains as a result of the downturn in spending. And that’s the reason why the government approved the Chancellor’s ‘Eat Out To Help Out’ scheme that cost almost £500 million in subsidised meals eaten out at the start of each week during August to help kick start the hospitality sector.
This wasn’t enough however to stop the slump in footfall to City centres and high streets and the reason why Costa Coffee has just announced potential redundancies of up to ten per cent of its staff equating to around 1,650 jobs. And that’s on top of Pret A Manger plans to cut some 2,900 jobs revealed last week as part of its closure of thirty branches.
So the unanswered question remains, what will people do post-lockdown with their lockdown savings, spend or save?