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OpenTable Survey Reveals Valentine's Day Dining Trends

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According to a new survey released today by OpenTable (OPEN), the world's leading provider of online restaurant reservations, restaurants are poised to be busy with diners celebrating love not only on Thursday, February 14, but on the weekend following Valentine's Day.OpenTable diners also indicated that they plan to celebrate love in a big way with a projected check average of $139, which is 63 percent more than the typical OpenTable check average of $85 per couple. The survey results also provided a peek into dating habits and trends related to the busiest holiday for dining out.

"The idea of a romantic Valentine's Day meal often conjures up images of lavish tasting menus, enchanting small plates, and prix fixe menus," said Caroline Potter, Chief Dining Officer of OpenTable. "However, our survey revealed some surprising insights into how people want to celebrate Valentine's Day and an indication of romantic trends to come. Diners prefer a la carte ordering in a classic three-course meal where they can personalize their experience."

Long Weekend of Love

  • 51 percent of respondents said they plan to dine out on the Thursday, February 14, while 36 percent said they plan to celebrate Valentine's Day on Friday, February 15, or Saturday, February 16.
  • 5 percent of diners said they plan to celebrate on Wednesday, February 13.
  • 8 percent of respondents plan on dining out more than once for Valentine's Day.

Positive Reviews and Ambience Matter Most

  • Respondents indicated that the top three factors in selecting a restaurant for Valentine's Day are positive reviews (34%), romantic ambience (27 %) and service (16%).
  • Less important attributes included restaurant location (14%), special Valentine's Day menus (8%) and the quality of the wine list (1%).

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