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    Study Shows How Consumers Chow Down

    Orlando residents love to sit down; Birmingham is after on-the-go eats.

    While Birmingham residents are most likely to visit a fast-food restaurant to feed the need for a quick bite, Orlando is the top market for frequent sit-down restaurant patronage, according to a new study by New York-based Scarborough Research, a market research firm that tracks shopping, media and lifestyle patterns of U.S. adults.

    The study shows consumers in the City Beautiful visit a sit-down restaurant 4.5 times monthly, the Orlando Business Journal reported. Cincinnati, Ohio, and Fort Myers tied for second at 4.2 average visits, with Tampa next at 4.1 average visits.

    A sit-down restaurant includes establishments such as Applebees, T.G.I. Friday's and Boston Market, Scarborough says.

    As to the fast-food stops -- which include restaurants such as McDonald's or Subway -- Birmingham leads the pack with an average 6.5 visits per month. Rounding out the top three are Louisville, Ky., with 6.4 average visits per month, and Austin, Texas, with 6.3 average visits, the newspaper reported.

    The U.S. average for fast-food stops is 5.2 times in a given month, Scarborough says, while sit-down stops nationwide average 3.4 times per month.

    The good news for restaurants, says Scarborough Research's Karla Horton, is that "in understanding the lifestyles, media patterns and shopping habits of consumers on this local market level, franchisees can create better locally focused campaigns to drive store traffic."

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