UK Consumers Want Self-serve Kiosks in Hospitality Venues According to New Research

The average Brit will spend 47 days QUEUEING over their lifetime, according to a new study Kurve commissioned this month.   And when it comes to ordering food and beverages, waiting in queues is no longer acceptable and self-serve kiosks are high in demand.

The survey undertaken by OnePoll  of 2,000 adults revealed the average Brit will spend 51 minutes waiting in line each week – leaving it unsurprising the nation has a reputation for complaining about queuing.  

Even though we may be considered a nation which queue constantly, one third think having to wait to order food or drink is unacceptable. And 62 per cent believe venues, bars, casual dining and coffee shops should be doing more to reduce queue time. What does this mean for the hospitality sector?

The days of British patience with queuing appear numbered according to the survey and on-street video interviews. Brits reported feeling bored, impatient and annoyed when stuck in a queue, which may be why 41 per cent prefer to choose a self-service kiosk over a cashier. And while a third would still rather go to a manned cash point or a cashier, two in five believe self-service kiosks are more efficient.

The days of British patience with queuing appear numbered according to the survey and on-street video interviews. Brits reported feeling bored, impatient and annoyed when stuck in a queue, which may be why 41 per cent prefer to choose a self-service kiosk over a cashier. And while a third would still rather go to a manned cash point or a cashier, two in five believe self-service kiosks are more efficient.

However, Brits would still be happy to be served in person when it comes to fine dining, pubs and bars and coffee shops and the all-important human touch is not going to be leaving are sector for a long time yet.

In an attempt to avoid a long line, 37 per cent of respondents have used a self-service kiosk at a fast food restaurant.  Besides trying to avoid a queue, reasons given for choosing self-service were being able to avoid speaking to people, the freedom to design your own order and their general convenience.

In fact, one third would like to see more self-service kiosks at fast food restaurants, while a quarter would like to see them at visitor attractions. The longest length of time Brits are willing to wait for fast food is 7 minutes and 32 seconds before they abandon their order and move onto another outlet.

It also emerged that while 15 minutes and 47 seconds was considered too long to wait for a visitor attraction, Brits had waited as long as 20 minutes and 13 seconds. And 22 minutes and 20 seconds was deemed too long to wait for a concert, but many had experienced a wait as long as 29 minutes and 5 seconds.

On average, Brits say that the longest they have ever stood in line was just over an hour, and 42 per cent have complained because of a wait in the past. Standing in a long, polite queue is a shared national experience and part of British culture – but that doesn’t mean we have to like it, and it doesn’t mean improvements can’t be made.

With technological advancements like self-serve kiosks streamlining the queueing process we believe the astonishing 47 days we spend waiting in line can be reduced greatly. It’s not surprising that in the last twelve months, self-serve technology has been top of the agenda for many UK hospitality operators, with roll-outs predicted to soar in 2020.

With McDonalds setting the new consumer love of the self-serve kiosk, new Brands are being created to fill the consumer appetite for self-serve ordering. This summer saw the launch of fast-food outlet Chiktopia at Lakeside retail centre, Essex. The new concept and Kurve’s self-serve software that drives it, delivers a new level of customer experience within the British fast food sector through a blended digital and traditional customer journey of speed, service and choice.

100% kiosk ordering, with the option to pay cash, Chiktopia’s staff are fully focused on food preparation and table service rather than transaction. Leaving it well positioned between KFC and Nandos to challenge the UK’s fast food and QSR sector.

So what do people do when waiting in a queue? The survey showed to pass the time in line, 18 per cent play on their phone, one in 10 talk to the person next to them and one fifth daydream. And the majority of the nation, 64 per cent, believe people are getting ruder, meaning fewer people queue in a polite manner these days making the whole experience even less tolerable.

Despite our natural inclination to keep a stiff upper lip, 51 percent of those polled have told someone else off for skipping a queue, which is considered the biggest queueing faux pas by more than a third.

It’s great to read from our research that consumers are feeling the benefits from using self-service kiosks and are aware of some of the inherent drawbacks of manned check-outs.

And while it’s humorous to see many prefer the automated method as a way of avoiding social interaction, the improvements with regards to speed and convenience over the traditional method of queuing are our key takeaways.

To see the survey results visit www.kurvekiosks.com/queuing2019

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