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Solo Dining Increases in Popularity

Updated: Jan 15

Animation Source: Giphy

Solo dining is on the rise and you may wonder why? Isn't dining alone considered lonely and depressing? Many people dine alone because they work at home, travel as part of their work, or are single and living alone. Sometimes family and friends have other plans and the person likes to dine alone occasionally.

Dining alone does not always mean that you are lonely. Some families have spouses or partners working odd hours, traveling, working late, or involved in outside activities. Many workers today work alone or independently in home services, or as creative professionals, and in occupations that require working independently. .

Dining alone can be a chance for you to try a new cuisine of entree. Restaurants today cater to solo diners because it is a popular trend that continues to grow each year. Customers eat at smaller tables, counters, or what is called a food bar.

Photo Source: PxFuel

Reasons People Dine Alone

  • They live alone and enjoy eating in a restaurant with other people around them.

  • Their work involves traveling and they need to eat lunch or dinner for energy and health.

  • They like to sit alone, enjoy a meal, read, or catch up on work projects.

  • They need peace and quiet and some time away from the family or friends.

  • Sometimes family or friends are not available due to other activities, and they want to go out to eat anyway.

  • The work at home and sometimes like to go out for lunch or dinner

  • A chance to get away from the office and relax

Where to Eat When Solo Dining

Photo Source: Progressive

There are many restaurants that cater to solo diners. Fast food restaurants attract solo diners on lunch break, stay at home moms, seniors, and those working independently.

When you look for restaurants for solo dining check online or the newspaper for those that advertise for solo diners. Good places to eat are fast food restaurants, diners, coffee roasters or coffee shops with a food menu like Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts. Cafes, bistros, diners, and smaller restaurants often attract solo diners.

Restaurants for solo diner often have counters, small tables, food bars and serve small plates, appetizers, and smaller meals. When you investigate a restaurant read reviews or blogs that might tell you more about what they offer. Ask fellow workers at the office, friends, or family that dine alone for a recommendation.

Try to find restaurants that meet your budget or finances and located in a safe neighborhood where you do not mind going alone. If you eat with your family or socialize often and want to try solo dining occasionally why not do this. Bring a book, laptop, puzzle, game, or something to work on while you are in the restaurant. Go for a coffee at your local coffee shop alone this is good place to start.

Coffee Bar Counter: Photo Source: Kura

Tips For Solo Dining

Photo Source: Lars Ploughman/Flicker

  • Eat lunch or dinner earlier or later there will be less people

  • Bring a work project, game, or book to look at

  • Bring you cell phone and make calls to friends or family

  • Eat outside in good weather and eat at a smaller table or at the counter

  • Order takeout food and bring it home when you do not want to dine out

  • Try to purchase a meal you will enjoy eating or try something new that you think you will like

  • If you never eat alone, try it out occasionally especially if you enjoy solitude or need a break.

Photo Source: Giphy


Why People Eat At Restaurants Alone, The Restaurant Life

Hate Solo Dining 19 Ways That Make Eating Alone More Fun, by Lelya Alyanak, Women on The Road

Dinner For One How Restaurants Welcome Solo Diner, by Monica Burton, Eater, February 2018

Table For One: How Eating Alone Has Become One of the Coolest Dining Trends, by Autumn Swiers, Tasting Table. October 2023

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