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Industry Report: Consumers Around the World Discuss how COVID-19 has Changed their Lifestyles

Paige Guge

Design Research Associate

As we head into the third month of the COVID-19 pandemic, the world is changing right before our eyes and society is beginning to habituate. As valued Vidlet respondent Kara S simply put it in a recent COVID-19 related study, “At first it was very scary, now it just feels like normal life.”

Despite how “normal” post-pandemic life is beginning to feel, it is inarguable that COVID-19 has introduced many societal changes. We shop differently, we work differently, and now once mundane tasks like servicing your car presents new challenges (yes, we have data on that). With life as we knew it before feeling more and more distant, it is imperative that all industries have a deep understanding into the mindsets, attitudes, and behaviors of their consumers, customers, and employees alike during these rapidly changing times.

Here at Vidlet we have been busy tapping into these societal changes by talking to people from all corners of the world about how their lives have changed. The Vidlet platform uniquely utilizes a completely remote and unmoderated interview style where participants can answer our in-depth interview questions in the comfort of their own home. With more people at-home than ever before we have collected rich qualitative insights into how people are thinking, feeling, and behaving as compared to before as well as how they intend to behave once COVID-19 is over. Our post-COVID-19 humanistic data ranges across multiple industries including education, finance, consumer spending, restaurant management, and technology.

What have we learned?

Lifestyles have changed drastically and some of these changes people plan to implement permanently into their lives while other post-pandemic lifestyle changes people would like to see go away with the pandemic.

Eating & Drinking

“I will continue to order groceries delivered I see how much time that gives me back in my day. I will not go back to a weekly trip to the grocery store. It gives me my time back and I can use that time to play with the new baby.” – D.K, US

“When this is all over we'll get back to our normal routine like cooking meals and going to the grocery store. I am very much so tired of fast food and take out so just family time and a shared meal together.” – E.W, US

“One thing I certainly want to halt is alcohol. I want to slow down the consumption I don't think it's anything crazy over board but I want to really kind of just save it to Fridays and Saturdays with an occasional glass of wine here there.” – D.B, US

Engaging in Hedonic Activities in Public Spaces

“I don’t think I'm going to go to the movie theater anymore, the social distancing has made me fearful.” – E.S, US

“I'm really looking forward to going to a coffee shop on a Saturday morning and ordering a matcha latte. It would be nice to just go enjoy some time in a coffee shop amongst other people. I used to love doing that and I haven’t done that in awhile.” – L.D, US

Investing in New Hobbies

“I hope to continue doing the yard work I'm doing now. There is just something satisfying about it and my place looks nicer. It's more than I knew I enjoyed.” – G.F, US

“I'm hoping to continue my new hobbies of cooking and baking when this is all over because it's been really fun and really helpful with my mental health.” – L.D, US

“I want to get into doing sports in the backyard with my kids but you know with what's going on in the world right now I have to make sure that I'm budgeting for you know priority things rather than entertainment or Hobbies.” – E.P, Canada

In response to the rapid onset of COVID-19, many are making financial changes and re-evaluating how they manage and spend their money.

“I opened a COVID-19 specific bank account in case the financial climate changes and preventing that from being an issue for me.” – S.K, US.

“I should learn to save for a rainy day.” – L.Z, China

“In the future we want to spend a little bit less money on frivolous things and put a little bit more money in the bank- those things are going to be much more important.” – V.C, US

“I really been evaluating where things are purchased from you know I've been looking and I want to support local small business I really want to support American made products that is something that I didn't feel strongly or passionately for before that I definitely am going to advocate for from here on out.” – J.L, US

Being forced to utilize more technology at work has made people want to continue implementing more remote communications in the future.

There's a greater emphasis on dealing with a customer remotely. I think if it's possible it would be helpful to create even less interaction between me and the customer. If we set up a camera and the customers can watch me do the service call remotely and then bring up any questions that would create a greater degree of separation between me and the customer.” – D.S, Comcast Field Technician, US

“On the service end I think if it continues for even another month it’s going to create an adaptation where people won’t feel the need to come inside. Just contact me digitally, it’s great.” – J.E, Service Center Employee, US

“Just switching over to having touchless contact. The customer doesn’t have to visually see someone getting in and out of their car. That’s something that we have changed and will probably continue. Just really trying to do a lot more electronically.” – C.A, Car Dealership Employee, US

“We've all shown that you could absolutely work from home. I don't miss much about the way work was done before COVID-19. I think that more people will choose to work from home and companies will get used to not having to maintain those big buildings and pay all that money you know for a building when you could just have a laptop. If you don't have to drive into work every day, why would you?” – M.D, School Teacher, US

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