Food for Thought: Half of Americans Didn’t Eat Out Last Year Skip to main content

You are here

Food for Thought: Half of Americans Didn’t Eat Out Last Year


Despite recent findings that the number one thing Americans waste their money on is eating out, a new survey provides the proverbial “food for thought” to those who believe they are struggling alone in their own personal financial crisis. A report from Seattle Weekly finds that more than half of all Americans say they've recently gone a year without dining out, in what may be one of the clearest signs of how the current economic malaise is impacting our ability to consume even the most basic luxury choices. In fact, according to recently released figures from the U.S. Census Bureau, only 49.3 percent of adults say they "dined out" between fall 2009 and fall 2010, accounting for the lowest percentage of people eating at restaurants since 2007, when just 48.7 percent of adults said they did so. These shocking figures don’t bode well for a struggling American economy built (and likely, in the distant future, rebuilt) on national consumerism—buying power responsible for driving some seventy percent of the country’s growth and prosperity.  But with a nation-full of rampant joblessness, this consumer-fueled financial infusion isn’t likely to re-emerge anytime soon. As The Huffington Post reports, “for many people, the extra cash simply isn't there for something like a meal at a restaurant or a night at the movies. Thanks to unemployment, stagnant incomes and a recession that wiped out millions of dollars in individuals' net worth, the average American has $1,315 less in disposable income than she did in 2008, meaning that more people have to be careful about prioritizing their spending. According to recent figures, half of all Americans with jobs made less than $27,000 last year, a figure that may not leave much room for treats like a night out. And for some, not being able to eat at a restaurant is less of a pressing a problem than not having the money to buy groceries. A recent Gallup poll found that almost one in five Americans struggled to put food on the table in the past year, and another survey published over the summer found that the number of people with access to basic life necessities like food, shelter and medical care -- a number that took a hit in 2008, with the onset of the financial crisis -- still had not recovered to pre-recession levels.” This failure to recover has impacted many families, with most avoiding the luxuries of eating out, buying clothes or even taking vacations—expenditures that were once commonplace—and some finding themselves relegated to soup kitchens, thrift stores, and second jobs, just to get by. But whether you splurged on eating out in previous years and are now experiencing the “headaches” of a buying binge, or you’ve sacrificed on luxury expenditures and are still having trouble staying current, it’s important to understand that you have options—viable options for discharging debts under a Chapter 7 liquidation or Chapter 13 restructuring bankruptcy. Once taboo, these types of bankruptcy filings are becoming commonplace measures for millions of men and women hoping to restructure their debts into a more affordable payment option or, in most cases, dispense with them completely by liquidating unsecured budgetary blights. The bankruptcy attorneys at the Law Offices of John T. Orcutt offer a totally FREE debt consultation and now, more than ever, they represent the best nourishment for those hungry to start a new financial future. Just call toll free to +1-919-646-2654, or find them online during off hours at Simply click on the yellow “FREE Consultation Now” button.

Debts Hurt! Got debt? Need help? Get started below!

What North Carolina County Do You Reside In?