New research shows how New Zealanders have reacted to the lockdown and what they will do as COVID-19 restrictions ease
In the first six months, if allowed, there will be huge surges in custom for the retail, postal and courier and travel sectors.
Within these, fast food outlets, hardware stores, garden centres and cafes will see millions of customers return.
Some services open during Alert Level 4 lockdown, will also see a large growth in trade.
The April 8-14 survey by Horizon Research finds the number using petrol stations will jump from 43% of adults to 82% (up from around 1,553,200 people to an estimated 2,930,100 people).
The number using hardware stores will lift from 4% during the lockdown to 52% (151,000 now, rising to 1,876,600).
For hard hit hospitality businesses, like cafes, there will be a strong resurgence – as soon as their use is allowed.
Cafes rank seventh for intended use out of 47 potential activities measured: 51% of adults will use a café, around 1,837,200 adults.
Between 13% and 25% of adults will shop at electronics, appliance and furnishing stores.
The tourism and related businesses will enjoy a restart, with more than a million adults intending to take domestic holidays and road trips.
29%, or around 1,053,000 adults, will go on a domestic holiday.
33%, or around 1,175,700 would go on New Zealand road trips.
19%, or around 697,000 adults, would definitely take domestic flights, 327,200 say they would take international flights – assuming they are available.
8%, or around 276,800, would stay in hotels and 11% (an estimated 388,300 people) in motels.
Courier and postal services will enjoy some of the biggest increases in the first six months as lockdown restrictions are eased.
The number of adults sending non-essential, non-commercial, courier items will increase from 7% to 43% (258,900 to 1,528,000 users).
Lockdown support and confidence:
While New Zealanders are intending a return to a new normal after lockdown, they are also in strong support of most being required to stay at home in an effort to contain and eliminate the COVID-19 threat.
Amid comment that the lockdown was too severe and growing calls for the economy to be re-opening quickly, between April 8 and 14 95% of adults were complying with the lockdown restrictions. Another 4% of respondents were essential workers – leaving just 1% (around 39,500 adults) saying they were definitely not complying.
In March, on the first days of the lockdown, 75% thought they, their household and families would cope well with the lockdown. In April, after 2 weeks of the lockdown, 95% said they, their household and families were coping well with the lockdown (48% very well).
However, in the latest survey, 7% were not coping well – which equates to about 237,300 adults (2% not well at all: 61,100 adults).
Confidence lockdown will work:
72% are confident that COVID-19 can be contained, and widespread community transmission prevented, rating their confidence on a 0 to 10 scale, where 0 = “Not confident at all” and 10 = “Very confident”.
72% give a 6+ rating; 46% a rating of 8 out of 10 or more.
26% rate their confidence at 5 or less, with 4% saying they are not confident at all.
Trust Ministry of Health and Government to manage in the best way:
Horizon asked: “At this time, how much do you trust the Ministry of Health and Government to manage the COVID-19 pandemic in a way which best protects you and other New Zealanders?”
88% trust the threat will be managed in the best way (33% totally, 40% mostly, 15% somewhat trust).
13% are distrustful (3% totally) while 1% are not sure.
Events and lifestyle:
In general, 1% of adults claimed to have been doing any of the listed events during the lockdown period.
While there will be a huge return to eating fast foods and going to restaurants and cafes, half a million will go back to the gym, around the same level of use measured in 2016 and by Horizon in 2018.
There will also be a resurgence in the numbers attending sports events, funerals, weddings and events.
The number going to movies will rise to 31% of adults, around 1,110,900 people.
|Category||During lockdown||In the 6 months after lockdown lifted|
|%||Estimated No.||%||Estimated No.|
|Attend sports events||1%||25,200||17%||596,800|
|Gym/ exercise facility||1%||36,000||14%||517,700|
The survey was conducted among members of Horizon’s nationwide specialist HorizonPoll online research panel between April 9 and 14 (mostly between April 9 and 10). There were 1,267 respondents aged 18+. The survey sample is weighted by age, gender, employment status, educational level and personal income to ensure a representative sample of the adult population at the 2018 census. At a 95% confidence level, the maximum margin of error is +/- 2.8%.