Greeks keep eating out despite crisis


The financial crisis may have diminished Greeks’ disposable incomes, but not enough for them to give up the popular pastime of eating and drinking out.

Eurostat data show that Greeks spend a significant share of their income on eating and drinking outside of the home, a figure which came to 12.4 percent of their total expenditure in 2018. This is the fourth highest rate among the 28 European Union member-states, trailing only Ireland (14.4 percent), Spain (13 percent) and Malta (12.6 percent).

This high rate of spending on food and drink was registered while real private consumption in purchasing power parities amounted to 77 percent of the EU average in 2018, just up on the 76 percent rate recorded in 2017.

Greeks also use more of their reduced disposable income to cover healthcare and other services provided by the state than their EU counterparts. Greek households spent 7.5 percent of their income on healthcare, compared to 3.9 percent in Germany, 3.6 percent in Finland and 1.2 percent in the UK. Greeks also spent 3.2 percent on education, against 0.8 percent in Italy and 0.7 percent in Germany.