A significant number of Americans who changed their shopping, eating, working, personal care and leisure behavior during the pandemic aren’t planning to revert to their pre-pandemic behavior, even as they are vaccinated and restrictions are lifted, according to “Fads or Forever? Consumers Reveal Post-Pandemic Plans,” a report by Advantage Sales based on a May 2021 survey of more than 1,000 U.S. adults.

Sixteen months into the pandemic, more than half of adults are still preparing and eating meals at home more often now than they did prior to the pandemic and four in 10 plan to continue making and eating more meals at home when pandemic restrictions are lifted, according to the report. One-third of American adults are baking more often and nearly as many are ordering out more frequently than they did before the pandemic.

Nearly half of all Americans continue to stock up on essential products such as cleaning supplies, toilet paper and paper towels more often than they did pre-COVID-19 and more than one-fourth say they’ll continue to stock up more often when the pandemic is a thing of the past.

Approximately four in 10 Americans are keeping a supply of nonperishable and frozen foods at home more often than they did prior to the pandemic; a significant number plan to continue their intensified pantry and freezer stocking in the future.

Among the report’s many other findings are:

  • Nearly one-fifth of surveyed adults say they’re drinking alcoholic beverages more frequently now than they did before the pandemic hit and almost the same amount say they’ll imbibe more often after the pandemic compared to their pre-COVID-19 drinking habits.
  • Nearly 40% of those surveyed are digital shopping more often for groceries and clothing now than they did pre-COVID-19. About one-fourth of American adults plan to continue shopping online more frequently when the pandemic is over.
  • Even as services have reopened, about a quarter of Americans say they are cutting their hair at home more often and shaving less often than they did prior to COVID-19.
  • Americans who are fully vaccinated are behaving much differently than those who don’t intend to be vaccinated: They’re more likely to be engaging in pandemic-driven eating, shopping and self-care behavior and more likely to say they’ll continue doing these activities.
  • While most changes in consumer behavior during the pandemic were driven by health and safety concerns, those who will continue them most often say they will for convenience, to save money or because they’re happy with their pandemic routines. In some instances, people simply enjoy their newfound habits or hobbies.
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