Cafés and coffee shops in the United Kingdom (UK) - Statistics & Facts

Cafés and coffee shops are a growing segment of the quick service restaurant market in the United Kingdom, with spending in coffee outlets predicted to increase in 2017. Although bakery and sandwich shop chains also merge into this market, the UK coffee shop market is dominated by the three leading coffeehouse chains; Costa Coffee, Starbucks and Caffè Nero.


Costa Coffee is a major British multinational coffee shop chain, ranking as the biggest coffeehouse chain in Europe by number of units and among the world’s leading coffeehouse companies by revenue. Costa’s store numbers have dramatically increased over the years, although presence is still highest in the UK, where Costa’s store count reached 2,034 in the fiscal year ending in 2016.

Although Starbucks ranks below Costa in the UK market, the international coffeehouse giant still has the largest presence in Britain out of all other European countries. However in terms of favorite coffee shops, European coffeehouse style chain Caffè Nero tends to have a better reputation than both Starbucks and Costa among many UK consumers.

Consumer purchases of hot beverages outside the home appeared to be declining until 2012, when consumption began to recover, particularly coffee consumption. Most users frequent coffee shops and sandwich bars in the UK once a month or less as opposed to weekly, although there are still regular purchasers. When asked where they usually drink coffee, 90 percent of consumers said at home, compared to 41 percent in a café and 26 percent in a coffee bar.

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