Koreans are tightening their belts and eating out less and less as the slump continues, a survey out Monday suggests.
The Korea Agro-Fisheries and Food Trade Corporation polled 3,014 adults and found that they bought ready lunches and dinners 20.8 times a month last year and spent W292,689 on average (US$1=W1,120). That was down from 21.8 times and W303,854 a year earlier.
The decrease in restaurant visits was more marked, from 15.1 times a month to 13.7 times per month. But food deliveries and takeouts came to 3.6 times each, up from 3.4 times and 3.3 times. Average spending on deliveries amounted to W14,709, followed by restaurant visits (W11,066) and takeouts (W9,945).
Respondents dined out alone an average of 3.5 times per month -- 4.4 times for men and 2.5 times for women. People in their 20s ate out alone 5.1 times per month, the most among the age groups.
The corporation said food delivery apps, lunch boxes and the retro-style restaurants will be three eating trends for this year.