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Press releases


19th Jan 2006

More than 25 per cent (1) of Britains workforce are so stripped of time that they are now eating breakfast at their desks as well as missing out on the sacred lunch hour break.

According to research released today, Brits tuck into 161 breakfasts every year at the office - the equivalent of more than two thirds of week day breakfasts consumed by adults during their working lives (2). This means Brits will work their way through more than a billion bowls of cereal, bagels and pieces of toast in front of a PC every year (3).

More than 20 million Brits (4) cite a lack of time in the mornings for not having breakfast at home:
More than five million exhausted Brits prefer to catch up on sleep (5)
Four and a half million adults spend time on chores and getting ready (6)
Three million rush to get into work extra early (7)
Two and a half million Brits have their hands full with the kids (8)

The top three favourite breakfast foods are:
Full English Breakfast

The study also found workaholic adults will eat nearly half their week-day meals at their desks, making Brits more likely to eat with work colleagues than with friends or family during the week (9).

Christine Webber, psychotherapist and life coach, said, "It used to be lunch at your desk that was the norm but the sad fact that more Britons are now also eating breakfast at their desks because they don't have time at home in the mornings can only lead to more stress in the workplace.

"Skipping breakfast is crazy as it leaves you feeling lousy and irritable mid-morning. It doesn't even save you calories as sugary snacks are a favourite breakfast replacement. All a chocolate bar will do is bring on a quick burst of energy, compared to the slow release energy you'll gain from a bowl of porridge, for example."

Travelodge surveyed more than 2,000 UK adults to explore the impact of Brits' busy lifestyles on eating habits. The pressure to squeeze more work, play and travel into every day, sees Brits combine working and eating like never before.

Guy Parsons, Chief Operating Officer, Travelodge said: "We've noticed a large number of our business customers eat breakfast on the run. Many use our breakfast bag takeaway service as they just want to crack on and get to early morning meetings - breakfast just isnt a big item on their agenda."

Millions of Brits stockpile food at work in advance of long hours at their desks without a break. Just over 40 per cent of the population admit to keeping food at their desk (10) with almost 3.5 million Brits keeping a stash of fruit - the most popular desk snack ahead of crisps and chocolate (both favoured by just under 3 million Brits).

Professions most likely to eat their meals every day at work:
1. Solicitor 44.4 %
2. IT manager 21.5 %
3. Project manager 19.8 %
4. Call centre staff 19.4 %
5. Journalism/media 17.6 %

According to psychotherapist Webber, "It seems as if some of the brightest and most highly qualified Brits simply arent using their brains when it comes to looking after themselves. Work is difficult enough without trying to 'run on empty' or combine meals with a busy agenda. Stopping for breakfast is crucial for performance, as is taking the time to have a break away from your desk for meals if you must eat frequently in the office."

Professions least likely to eat at their desk every day
1. Telephone sales 67%
2. Self employed 64%
3. Banking 58%
4. Engineers 53%
5. Nurse 51%

For more information, please contact:
Jo Begbie
Travelodge PR Manager
0121 521 6624
07841 725 053

* Travelodge research conducted by 72 point in December 2005 among 2000 UK adults.

Statistics calculated on the basis of 46,613,000 adults over the age of 18 in the UK and 28.81m British people currently in employment (acc to the Office for National Statistics).

(1) Actual figure is 7,391,143 - 26% of the British workforce (28.81m)

(2) Brits have 161 breakfasts every year at the office out of a possible 240

(Brits have breakfast at their desks an average of 3.36 times a week x 48 working weeks in a year = 161.28; 48 x 5 days a week = 240) 161 of 240 = 67%

(3) In a year, 7m+ Brits (that eat at their desk) will eat 1bn+ breakfasts (7,391,143 x 161 = 1,189,974,023)

(4) Actual figure is 20,183,429 43.3% of British adults

(5) Actual figure is 5,220,655 - 25.5% of those that don't have time at home

(6) Actual figure is 4,707,804 - 23% of those that don't have time at home

(7) Actual figure is 3,123,062 - 15% of those that don't have time at home

(8) Actual figure is 2, 656, 885 - 13.1% of those that don't have time at home

(9) Brits will eat 14,743 meals at their desks the equiv to 43 per cent of a possible 33,840 week day meals adults will eat during their working lives (3 meals a day x 5 days = 15 a week x 48 working weeks a year = 720 a year x 47 years = 33,840)

14,743 meals at or on the way to work (48 weeks a year, 47 years in average working lifetime):

Breakfast at desk: Av = 3.36 a week x 48 = 161.28 a year x 47 = 7580 a lifetime

Lunch at desk: Av = 2.35 a week x 48 = 113.08 a year x 47 = 5,314 in a lifetime

Meal in evening at desk: Av = .82 a week x 48 = 39.36 x 47 = 1,849 in a lifetime

Breakfast on the way to work: Av = 2.67 a week x 48 = 128.3 a year x 47 = 6,030 in a lifetime

= 14743 meals in a lifetime 43% of 33840

(10) Actual figure is 42.8%. 3,462,154 adults keep fruit at their desks whereas 2,964,599 adults keep crisps and 2,881,673 adults keep chocolate.

As the first budget hotel brand to launch in the UK in 1985, Travelodge currently has approximately 291 sites across the UK in city centres, near attractions and airports.

Travelodge launched a new pricing strategy on 1 December 2005, delivering 500,000 26 rooms, around 100,000 10 rooms, and further price cuts on thousands of standard rates for 2006. The strategy produced three new, simple price bands - Supersaver (10 room - available online), Saver (26 room - available online) and Flexible (available online or by calling the Reservation Centre on 08700 850 950).

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