2024 Canadian Diner Trends Report

Uncover the latest Canadian restaurant industry statistics and consumer trends inside the 2024 Canadian Diner Trends Report.

The coral cover of the 2024 Canadian Diner Trends Report Cover on a pink background.

What’s Inside the 2024 Canadian Dining Trends Report:

  • The latest data from a survey of 1,000+ Canadian diners 
  • Up-to-date restaurant industry statistics for Canada
  • A breakdown of dining habits by generation – from Gen Z to Boomers
  • Canadian consumer trends, including the top dining deal-makers and deal-breakers
  • A breakdown of food delivery market share in Canada and the most popular food delivery apps in Canada
  • The top 5 Canadian dining trends for 2024


Uncover the latest Canadian restaurant industry statistics and consumer trends inside the 2024 Canadian Diner Trends Report.

The past year has seen significant changes in Canadian dining habits. 25% of Canadians now say they dine out weekly or more often, which is down from 38% the year prior. On the other hand, our research shows that 31% of Canadians are ordering takeout at least once a week, compared to just 25% in 2022 – a shift in behaviour that suggests that the current economic situation is putting pressure on Canadians’ wallets, causing them to trim their dine-in budgets and shift to slightly cheaper takeout options instead.

To better understand this shift and other emerging Canadian dining trends, we recently surveyed more than 1,000 consumers from across the country. With extensive data on diner frequency, values, habits, and more, our findings reveal just how much has changed in the past year, as well as emerging Canadian trends to watch. For restaurateurs, this data provides valuable insight into what today’s diners want and what’s required to provide the best possible guest experience.

2024 Dining and Food Trends in Canada

Below you’ll find a preview of the latest Canadian consumer trends and statistics uncovered by our report. For a complete picture of the changing industry landscape and the biggest trends in foodservice, download the 2024 Canadian Diner Trends Report now.

1. Menu Price Increases Due for a Pause

In Canada, inflation has finally begun to decelerate, but consumers are still feeling the effects of cost of living increases (plus new pressures from rising debt levels and reduced savings) and, as a result, their appetite for menu price hikes has disappeared. While diners are still eating out, they’re doing so less frequently because of price increases. Instead, they’re shifting their attention to takeout and engaging with popular food delivery apps in Canada more often, which tend to offer more deals and discounts.

Ultimately, our report found that if menu prices continue to rise at a rate faster than inflation, fewer Canadians will be dining out or ordering in from restaurants. In fact, 33% reported that if a restaurant raised its prices, this would significantly impact their interest in ordering takeout/delivery. Moreover, 30% say a price hike would significantly impact their decision to dine in at a particular restaurant – a figure that jumps up to 38% among Gen Zs specifically, which is the group that dines out the most.

Canadian restaurants have been fortunate that diners have largely absorbed price increases until now, but in 2024, they should look for other ways to manage costs and reduce expenses. If they must raise prices, operators should target premium items only and hold off on bumping up prices for lunch specials or happy hour. The message from diners is clear: restaurants shouldn’t raise their menu prices by more than 10%, as that is the highest increase most Canadians say they can absorb. 

2. A Digital-First Approach

One of the other major restaurant trends in Canada doesn’t take place in the restaurant at all – it happens online before a guest even walks through the door.

As our report uncovered, one thing that nearly all Canadian diners do before visiting a new restaurant is to look at the menu online (79% always or often do this) or visit the restaurant’s website (75% always or often do this). Loyalty program members are the most likely to look up a menu online (87% always or often do this) and visit the website (85% always or often do this). This is crucial information for restaurateurs, especially those who haven’t paid a ton of attention to their digital presence in the past.

Considering that most consumers turn to popular food delivery apps in Canada when their local restaurants don’t have an online presence, this means it’s time for restaurateurs to show some love to their digital real estate, or risk losing business to the competition.

Today’s operators must think carefully about the customer journey and assume that a diner’s experience with their restaurant will almost always start online or on an app. In short, restaurateurs need to put in the effort to optimize their digital presence, from how their website ranks in Google searches to whether the user experience is intuitive. Leaving these items up to chance means restaurants will risk losing potential customers. 

3. Putting Value on the Menu

It’s clear that value is a major driver for enticing consumers to join both restaurant loyalty programs and email lists (36% of Canadians will subscribe to emails for access to discounts or coupons). And considering how sensitive diners are to price hikes, offering value is set to become one of the consumer trends in Canada this year. However, this doesn’t simply mean offering tons of freebies and discounts. It’s more about delivering the perception of value.

For instance, operators can offer value simply by giving diners more flexibility in how they redeem points. An easy way to do this is allowing diners to choose from multiple types of free items, as opposed to just one specific item. For instance, one of the biggest food trends in Canada is plant-based eating, with 30% of Canadians saying they want to see more vegetarian options on the menu. By giving consumers the choice between a meat-based item and a vegetarian item, you can deliver added value and better tap into current Canadian dining trends.

By serving up flexibility, restaurateurs don’t have to sacrifice their bottom line, and consumers also feel like they’re receiving added value – a win-win situation. And considering the fact that 54% of Canadians prefer points-based rewards, this type of setup can be particularly enticing.

Reinforcing the notion of value by offering flexible perks (like more reward redemption options) is an excellent way for restaurants to delight diners without breaking the bank. Major brands have already begun to leverage this communication strategy, and savvy restaurateurs would be wise to do the same if they want to keep pace with one of the biggest restaurant trends in Canada.

How We Collected Our Canadian Restaurant Industry Statistics

To create our 2024 Canadian Diner Trends Report, we partnered with research firm Maru/Matchbox to survey 1,000 diners of all ages from across Canada. Our research was conducted from September 12th to September 21st, 2023. Survey results are accurate +/- 3% for the general population of Canadian diners.

The complete respondent profile, as well as more Canadian trends, can be found inside the full report.

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