Most Wanted: Restaurant Gift Cards Top the List (Infographic)

Restaurant gift cards will be a hot holiday present because, according to new research from the National Restaurant Association, more than 60 percent of people are hoping to receive a restaurant gift card this holiday season.

While you’re making your shopping lists over the next few weeks, keep these numbers in mind:

  • 62 percent of adults would like to like to receive a restaurant gift card
  • 62 percent those people would prefer one for their favorite restaurant
  • 20 percent want to try a new spot
  • 18 percent want to try a place they would never pick on their own

When asked about their plans for using the restaurant gift cards, 24% said they would use them as soon as possible; 38 percent said they would use theirs within a few weeks; another 38 percent said they would save it for a special occasion.

“Whether they want to eat out or order in, gift cards will work for everyone on your list; you can get them in any amount and technology makes them easy to share so you never have to worry about them being late or getting lost,” said Hudson Riehle, senior vice president of Research for the National Restaurant Association. “People may be reluctant to give a gift card because they feel they’re too impersonal, but what you’re giving is the flexibility and opportunity for them to choose what they want. Plus, they’re a great option if you’re looking to give an experience rather than a material item.”

For people who are looking to shop local or to support small businesses, restaurants are a great option.

“Gift cards are easy to purchase at any time, but Small Business Saturday on November 27 is a good time to start. More than 70 percent of restaurants are small businesses that support the local economy with jobs and provide a gathering place for everyone. Many of these restaurants were hit hard by the pandemic and are struggling to rebuild,” said Riehle.

The National Restaurant Association conducted an online survey of 1,027 adults Nov. 12-14, 2021, asking questions about their perceptions of restaurant gift cards