Table for Two: Restaurant Dining Trends on Valentine’s Day

valentine's day dining trends


Presented by Toast and OpenTable

Known for gifts, chocolate, and fancy restaurant dates, Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. Let’s take a look at U.S. restaurant sales and reservations trends on February 14 of last year compared to the year before.


Restaurant Sales

On Valentine’s Day, online and in-store restaurant sales increased and service remained excellent with high average tips.

32%

Overall sales increase compared to other Wednesdays in February

7%

Online ordering sales increase compared to other Wednesdays in February

Women’s Foodservice Forum February 2019 728×90

20%

Average Tip on February 14


Most Popular Places to Dine

New York City, Chicago, and Boston were the cities with the highest growth in sales. Massachusetts, California, and New York were the states with the highest sales overall.

  • New York City: 22% increase
  • Chicago: 28% increase
  • Boston: 36% increase

When it comes to making reservations, couples in New York City, Baltimore, California, and Missouri saw the highest increases in seated reservations:

  • Of all US Cities, New York City had the highest absolute increase in seated reservations.
  • Of the top 25 US Cities (by Valentine’s Day Reservations), Baltimore had the highest percentage increase.
  • Of all US States, California had the highest absolute increase in seated reservations.
  • Of the top 25 US States (by Valentine’s Day Reservations), Missouri (MO) had the highest percentage increase.

Valentine’s Day


Types of Restaurants

Of all restaurant types, fine dining restaurants saw the largest increase in restaurant sales.

105%

On Valentine’s Day, we saw 105% of the average fine dining sales.


Reservations on Valentine’s Day

433%

Increase in restaurant reservations compared to the average number of reservations made for the same day in the weeks surrounding Valentine’s Day. Many couples made reservations last minute — the week of February 14. Here’s the breakdown:

  • 52% of Valentine’s day reservations are made between February 7-14
  • 19% of Valentine’s day reservations are made between January 30 and February 6
  • 11% of Valentine’s day reservations are made between January 22 and January 29
  • 18% of reservations are made January 21 or earlier

Guests Dining At the Table

Of course, parties of two increase on Valentine’s Day, but so do parties of four, three, six, and five, compared to the average party size in the weeks before and after.

  • Table for 2: 764% increase
  • Table for 4: 123% increase
  • Table for 3: 79% increase
  • Table for 6: 46% increase
  • Table for 5: 35% increase