Diners - Timing of Eating Out
By examining the busiest times for dining out in Los Angeles restaurants that are similar in cuisine, rating, price range, and hours of operation as Eve, the typical timing of when diners tend to eat out in Los Angeles is 1:00 p.m. for lunch and 8:00 p.m. for dinner during the week. On the weekends, 12:00 p.m. is more popular for brunch/lunch, but 8:00 p.m. is still the preferred time for dinner. Across the country, 7:00 p.m. is the preferred dining time for most diners, so Los Angeles diners tend to eat a little later than the average American. Fridays are the busiest days for dining out in Los Angeles, as well as in the United States and Americans are nearly twice as likely to eat out during the summer than in winter and three times more likely to eat out in summer as in spring or fall. Details of these findings and others are below.
EVE AMERICANA BISTRO
- For comparison purposes, Eve restaurant is an American bistro that serves brunch, lunch, and dinner.
- Eve's Google entry does not offer a price range, but on TripAdvisor, it has a price range of $-$$$.
- The restaurant also has a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars.
TRUXTON'S AMERICAN BISTRO
- Truxton's American Bistro has a price range of $$ and a rating of 4.4 out of 5 stars.
- Its peak times for lunch are 1:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m on weekdays.
- Its peak time for dinner is 7:00 p.m on all days of the week.
- On Sundays, its peak times for brunch are 12:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m..
- Cafe Birdie is an American bistro-style restaurant that has a price range of $$ and a rating of 4.4 out of 5 stars.
- It is only open for dinner during the week and the busiest times are 7:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.,
- On Saturdays and Sundays, the restaurant serves brunch and lunch as well as dinner and for brunch/lunch, its peak time is 12:00 p.m. on both weekend days, with Sunday a little busier than Saturday.
THE PARK RESTAURANT
- The Park Restaurant is an American bistro that has a price range of $$ and a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars.
- Except for Mondays, when the restaurant is not open for dinner, the peak time for dinner here is 7:00 p.m.
- For lunch, the restaurant has a peak time of 1:00 p.m. on all weekdays.
- On weekends the peak brunch/lunchtime is 12:00 p.m. and it is busier on Sundays than on Saturdays.
HERE'S LOOKING AT YOU
- Here's Looking at You is a new American restaurant with a price range of $$$ and a rating of 4.6 out of 5 stars.
- This restaurant is only open for dinner on weekdays and its peak dining time is 8:00 p.m.
- On the weekends, the restaurant is open for lunch/brunch and its peak dining hours are 12:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m.
- Craft is a new American restaurant with a price range of $$$$ and a rating of 4.6 out of 5 stars.
- Throughout the week, the peak time for lunch is 1:00 p.m.
- On Mondays through Thursdays, the peak time for dinner is 7:00 p.m., but on Fridays, the peak is 8:00 p.m.
- Craft is not open for brunch or lunch on weekends and is closed on Sunday, but on Saturday, the peak time for dinner is also 8:00 p.m.
- Animal is a new American restaurant with a price range of $$$ and a rating of 4.4 out of 5 stars.
- Throughout the week, Animal is not open for lunch and the peak time for dinner is 8:00 p.m., with 9:00 p.m. another popular choice on Fridays.
- On weekends, the peak time for brunch/lunch is 1:00 p.m. on Saturdays and 12:00 p.m. on Sundays.
- Otium is a new American restaurant with a price range of $$ and a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars.
- Except for Mondays, when Otium is not open for lunch, the peak time for the mid-day meal is 1:00 p.m., but 12:00 p.m. is a very close second.
- For dinner, throughout the week, 8:00 p.m. is slightly more popular than 7:00 p.m., but they are close.
- On the weekends, 1:00 p.m. is the peak time for brunch/lunch and 8:00 p.m. is the peak time for dinner.
- Kali is a restaurant the features contemporary California cuisine with a $$$ price range and a rating of 4.6 out of 5 stars.
- On the weekdays, 1:00 p.m. is the most popular time for lunch and 8:00 p.m. is the most popular time for dinner.
- Kali is not open for lunch on weekends, but the most popular dining time is 8:00 p.m. on Saturdays and 7:00 p.m. on Sundays.
LITTLE BEAST RESTAURANT
- Little Beast Restaurant is a new American restaurant with a $$ price range and a rating of 4.6 out of 5 stars.
- This restaurant is not open for lunch on weekdays and its peak dining time is 7:00 p.m. on Mondays through Thursdays, and 8:00 p.m. on Fridays.
- On weekends, the most popular time for brunch/lunch is 12:00 p.m. Dinner times are more varied on weekends, with 7:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. the most popular on Saturday, but 6:00 p.m. is the most popular dinner time on Sunday.
- Cliff's Edge is a new American restaurant with a $$$ price range and a rating of 4.4 out of 5 stars.
- Cliff's Edge is not open for lunch during the week and the most popular dinner time on all days (except Sunday, when it is not open for dinner) is 8:00 p.m., with 9:00 p.m. also popular on Fridays.
- On weekends, the most popular time for brunch/lunch is 12:00 p.m.
- After examining 10 restaurants that are in Los Angeles and are similar to Eve in terms of cuisine, open times, and ratings, the conclusions about the typical timing of when diners tend to eat out in this area are as follows
- The peak dining times in Los Angeles, California for dinner during the week (Monday through Friday) range from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., but 8:00 p.m. is the busiest time at most restaurants.
- On Fridays, 9:00 p.m. is also a popular time for dinner in Los Angeles, but it does not beat out 8:00 p.m. for most restaurants.
- During the week (Monday through Friday), Los Angeles restaurants that are open for lunch are all busiest at 1:00 p.m. Only one restaurant examined (Truxton's American Bistro) had a similarly busy lunch at 2:00 p.m.
- On Weekends, the peak dining time for brunch/lunch is 12:00 p.m., with only four restaurants showing a higher peak at 1:00 p.m.
- Dinner times on the weekends are very similar to those on the weekdays, with 8:00 p.m. prevailing, but one restaurant's Sunday dinner peak (Little Beast Restaurant) was at 6:00 p.m.
- Overall, Fridays are the busiest days of the week, especially for dinner, but Sunday brunch is also one of the busiest times for restaurants that are open on Saturdays and Sundays.
UNITED STATES TRENDS IN TIMING FOR DINING OUT
- In 2016, 48% of surveyed Americans indicated they most frequently eat out in the summer, and as of 2018, this appears to still be the dominate season for dining out.
- Winter was the second-most popular season, with 26% of Americans stating they most frequently eat out during this season.
- Spring and fall are less popular overall, with only 15% (spring) and 11% (fall) of Americans choosing these seasons to eat out most frequently.
- This is supported by industry publications that state, "the restaurant industry tends to thrive during the summer or warm months."
- The surge in diners during the summer is related to an increase in tourism in many U.S. cities and restaurants located near hotels are most likely to see an uptick in diners in the summer.
- Although winter is the second-most popular season for dining out, it trails behind summer by a significant margin, likely because "customers might feel less compelled to travel to restaurants for a meal — especially if they are dealing with snow, ice or freezing temperatures."
- Holidays are also popular times for dining out in the U.S., with Mother's Day the number one holiday in terms of dining out. Other popular holidays are Valentine's Day (2nd), Father's Day (3rd), New Year's Eve (4th), and Easter (5th).
- According to Brian Fitzpatrick, CTO of Tock, an online reservation management platform, the hardest time to get a reservation in the U.S. is 7:00 p.m., suggesting that this is the most popular time for dining out in the U.S.
- According to tipping data from Cake, Fridays bring in the highest percentage of tips for servers, which is related to the increased number of diners on that day, suggesting that Fridays are the most popular day in the U.S. for dining out.
- Even though people tip more generously on Sundays (particularly the brunch crowd), "servers still make the most on Fridays because overall revenue is higher on Friday than Sunday."
To begin our research into insights, data, and statistics surrounding the typical timing of when diners tend to eat out and possible trends for dining when going out, we first focused our attention on Los Angeles by examining the restaurant archives of the Los Angeles Magazine, the Los Angeles City Guide, SoCalPulse, and other local publications to see if they provided the most popular dining times in the area. While we found restaurant recommendations, awards that local restaurants had won, and diner restaurant reviews, we were unable to find any information about the typical timing of when Los Angeles diners dine out. However, during this search, we discovered that Google offers data on when restaurants are the busiest throughout the week to help diners plan their visits. This provided us with our next strategy.
We determined what type of restaurant Eve is, which turned out to be a new American bistro with traditional European influences and a Los Angeles flair. Eve is open for brunch, lunch, and dinner every day of the week and has a Google rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars. We also discovered that the pricing range for Eve on TripAdvisor is $-$$$. Using this information about Eve allowed us to identify 10 similar restaurants in Los Angeles for which Google has data on their busiest times to provide a snapshot of when diners in Los Angeles tend to eat out. All restaurants selected have a similar cuisine, rating, price range, and hours of operation as Eve to provide the most relevant results possible.
After examining the data found on the 10 restaurants similar to Eve, we provided our conclusions on the typical times Los Angeles diners eat out for lunch, dinner, and weekend brunch at American bistro-style restaurants. We were also able to identify the busiest days of the week for these restaurants, which were Friday and Sunday morning. Note that we did not examine all restaurant types in Los Angeles, as there are too many results and triangulating an average for all Los Angeles restaurants would require additional time. However, the results of our 10-restaurant survey indicate that eating patterns are very similar across the board and would likely not vary much for other restaurants in the area, unless they are only open at a specific time during the day (i.e. only for breakfast) or are open 24-hours a day (i.e. target late-night diners).
Finally, we gathered some general statistics about U.S. diners overall, which provided more insights into the most popular dining seasons, holidays, times, and days of the week. Some data is older, such as the information from Statista on the most popular seasons for dining out, but since it is still quoted in recent sources, we assumed it is the latest data available. The trends that were identified were supported by numerous industry publications and hard data as indicated in the findings.