What Is Australia’s Favourite Takeaway Food?

What Is Australia’s Favourite Takeaway Food?

When you grab a takeaway meal for dinner, what’s your usual go-to cuisine? According to a new study, Chinese food remains the #1 takeway choice nationwide. However, each state has its own particular favourites, with Thai, Italian and US fast food chains topping the list in certain parts of Australia. Read on to find out if your food preferences fall in line with your state.

In a bid to discover Australia’s favourite takeaway cuisine, researchers from the Commonwealth Bank of Australia analysed CommBank transactional data for all takeaway purchases between 2008 and 2012. It then combined its data with anecdotal evidence from a national survey comprising 1,026 Australians in capital and non-capital city areas.

According to the report’s findings, Australia’s favourite takeaway dinner is Chinese, followed by Italian (i.e. — pizza) and Thai. Interestingly, the most popular takeaway food type varied significantly from state to state.

Here’s a breakdown of the most popular takeaway choice in each region (Canberra and the Northern Territory were not included in the study):

  • NSW: Thai (22%)
  • Victoria: Italian (17%)
  • South Australia: American fast-food (39%)
  • Western Australians: Chinese (32%)
  • Queensland: Chinese (28%)

The report also found that people in Victoria and NSW are the most prolific takeaway eaters with an average per-person spend of $81 and $79 per week, respectively. South Australians were the lowest spenders, purchasing an average of $49 worth of takeaway per week.

It’s worth noting that the above results aren’t entirely conclusive: only CBA bank transactions were collated and the survey amounts to roughly 200 participants per state. Nonetheless, it would appear that a significant proportion of the country still prefers the old-and-trusted staple of Chinese when it comes to takeaway dining.

What type of takeaway food do you purchase most? Is the decision mainly motivated by taste or price? Let us know in the comments section below.


    • The sample size of 200 per state is only for the anecdotal survey. The CBA transactions analysed were all takeaway transactions between 2008 and 2012, so I would presume this would be in the order of tens of thousands. And unless you can think of a reason why CBA customers would prefer certain types of takeaways compared to other bank customers, I don’t think the bank itself would be an issue.

      • Cheers for the clarification Dman. I wasn’t having a go at CBA, just that only bank transactions are counted. It would be interesting to know the % of people who pay by bank transaction and whether this subset of people skew the results. But hey – I know this is a PR piece for a bank rather than a true research piece to be critically analysed.

  • I’d like to know how they separated people who paid for takeaway meals from those who paid for dine-in meals though. Doesn’t it all look the same on the transaction?
    And how are they defining “American fast-food”? If this includes such giants as McDonalds, Hungry Jacks, KFC, Subway, etc. then it’s hard to believe that more people are buying meals from Chinese, Thai, or Italian places than these.

  • “Canberra and the Northern Territory were not included in the study”

    Neither is Tasmania. Am I to assume that we’ve been lumped with Victoria as usual?

  • Victoria and NSW are the most prolific takeaway eaters with an average per-person spend of $81 and $79 per week, respectively. South Australians were the lowest spenders, purchasing an average of $49 worth of takeaway per week.

    WTF?! An $81 per-person spend is like having (For Vic) take away 5 nights a week!

    For example:
    Fish and chips Friday – fried flake, some chips and dim sims $13
    Saturday – Pizza $14
    Sunday – Make a meal maybe?
    Monday – Lazy Subway night – $12 sub + drink
    tuesday – Thai $16
    Wednesday Thia $16
    thursday Thai – left overs

    • Yeah those numbers are pretty high. I’m thinking that perhaps by ‘per-person’ they actually mean the person doing the buying but not necessarily the person doing the eating. Mum or Dad buying $80 of takeaway for the family is more believable than the average person buying $80 of takeaway for themselves.

      • Not how it reads though, so if it is my understanding they are crazy numbers, if it is your understanding, then ok no issue. Cause if it is $81 per-person – times that by 2 adults and 2-3 kids….no way it can be true!?!

  • After having lived in the outer Perth suburbs of WA and visited family in outer Brisbane I can guarantee one of the main reasons Chinese is more popular than Thai is because there are very few Thai takeaways, especially if you compare to outer suburbs of Sydney. Between Rockingham and Mandurah there are exactly 2 Thai takeaways and both are pretty expensive so the cheaper and more common Chinese takeaways get a lot more business.

  • I simply do not get why Chinese food is so popular. There are so many more interesting cuisines to try, but Australians (Westerners in general) keep flocking towards “Chinese”. A lot of the dishes bare no differences between each other. The “meats” are all the same funky pieces, which only differentiate in colour, not taste or texture (seriously). They are mostly all very sickening (to me, anyway, it may be what’s added), and for some reason have a glisten to them. Over rated.

    • I completely agree! I can’t stand Chinese food, every time I eat it I feel ill. I’ve had so many people tell me I’m just not doing it right, but whenever I get convinced to go to a nice Chinese restaurant with them it still tastes the same and I’m left feeling sick.

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