Out to Lunch: New Survey Reveals Lunchtime Spending
A new survey by Visa shows that Americans go out to eat for lunch, an average of nearly twice a week and spend $10 per outing. That works out to an average of $18 per week or $936 per year. Men outspent women at the lunch counter and were also more likely to eat lunch out. They outspend women on a weekly basis by 44 percent. Of those that eat lunch out, women spend an average of just under $15 per week and men spend about $21.
Shockingly, one percent of people spend more than $50 per lunch or close to $5,000 a year. On the other end of the spectrum, 30 percent of respondents said that they didn't buy lunch out at all.
"Simple choices have a large impact on your wallet. Don't blow your budget on burgers and fries," says Nat Sillin Visa's head of U.S. Financial Education. "Clipping a coupon, choosing a less expensive item or brown bagging it can save you hundreds over the course of a year. Eating lunch at a restaurant isn't a bad thing, but it has to fit within your budget. Going into debt for a tuna sandwich isn't worth it."
Troublingly, respondents who said they make less than $25,000 per year spent more per meal, at $11.70, than those in any other income bracket. In contrast, those earning over $50,000 per year spent an average of $9.60 per meal; a difference of 22 percent..
Additionally, regional disparities exist between those who eat lunch out as well: