Throughout the period 3 to 13 March 2022, based on adults in Great Britain:
six in ten (60%) working adults exclusively travelled to work; this was the highest proportion since this measure was first recorded in May 2020 (29% over the period 14 to 17 May 2020)
around three-quarters (74%) of adults reported they wore a face covering when outside their home in the past seven days; this is the lowest proportion since the removal of plan B measures in England (95% between the 19 to 30 January 2022)
more than one in four (28%) adults reported always or often maintaining social distancing; this is the lowest proportion since this measure was first recorded in September 2020 (76% over the period 16 to 20 September 2020)
around 4 in 10 (38%) adults reported they had taken a rapid lateral flow test in the past seven days, continuing the decrease seen since January 2022 (61% between 6 to 16 January 2022)
one-third (33%) of adults reported they were very or somewhat worried about the effect of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on their lives right now; this is the lowest since the start of the coronavirus pandemic (86% between 20 to 30 March 2020)
In this period, we also found an increase in concerns about the cost of living. For example:
around 8 in 10 (83%) reported that their cost of living had increased; this is an increase from 62% when this measure was first recorded (in the period 3 to 14 November 2021)
among these adults, the most common reasons reported were an increase in the price of food (90%), an increase in gas or electricity bills (83%), and an increase in the price of fuel (79%)
the most common actions taken by those who said their cost of living had increased were to reduce spending on non-essentials (55%), use less fuel such as gas or electricity at home (43%), shop around more (38%), and cut back on non-essential journeys in their vehicle (35%)
One-third (33%) of adults reported they were very or somewhat worried about the effect of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on their lives right now. This is a further decline from 41% in the previous period, and is the lowest since the start of the pandemic (at its highest, 86% over the period 20 to 30 March 2020) and continues a gradual decrease from 66% during Plan B measures (15 December 2021 to 3 January 2022).
Levels of personal well-being were:
- life satisfaction (7.0 in this period and 7.0 in previous period)
- feeling that the things done in life are worthwhile (7.3 in this period and 7.3 in the previous period)
- happiness (6.9 in this period and 7.0 in the previous period)
- anxiety (4.1 in this period and 3.9 in the previous period)
These estimates of personal well-being may differ from the headline personal well-being statistics based on the Annual Population Survey. The methodology article on data collection changes due to the pandemic and their impact on estimating personal well-being details the differences between these two data sources.
Figure 3: Levels of personal well-being remained relatively stable
Adults in Great Britain, March 2020 to March 2022
- Questions: "Overall, how satisfied are you with your life nowadays?", "Overall, to what extent do you feel that the things you do in your life are worthwhile?", "Overall, how happy did you feel yesterday?" and "Overall, how anxious did you feel yesterday?".
- These questions are answered on a scale of 0 to 10, where 0 is "not at all" and 10 is "completely".
- Base: all adults.
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When asked how the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic was affecting their life in the past seven days, 17% of adults reported their household finances were being affected (15% in the previous period).
We asked adults about changes in their cost of living over the last month, with 83% reporting their cost of living had increased. This is part of an increasing trend, compared with 81% in the previous period and 62% when we first asked this question (3 to 14 November 2021).
Over the same period, the proportion of adults who think they would be able to save any money in the next 12 months has decreased; the percentage is 37% in the latest period compared with 46% over the period 3 to 14 November 2021. The proportion who reported their household could afford to pay an unexpected, but necessary, expense of £850 showed signs of decline; the percentage was 57% in the latest period compared with 61% over the period 3 to 14 November 2021.
The most common reasons reported by adults who said their cost of living had increased were:
- an increase in the price of food shopping (90% compared with 92% in the previous period)
- an increase in gas or electricity bills (83% compared with 80% in the previous period)
- an increase in the price of fuel (79% compared with 76% in the previous period)
The most common actions reported by adults who said their cost of living had increased were:
- spending less on non-essentials (55%)
- using less fuel such as gas or electricity at home (43%)
- shopping around more (38%)
- cutting back on non-essential journeys in my vehicle (35%)
There are strong seasonal spending patterns relating to gas and electricity that may affect the results presented in this section. For more information on this and recent price rises for gas and electricity, please see the latest Consumer price inflation statistics for January 2022.
Further demographic breakdowns of estimates in this bulletin are available within the accompanying Coronavirus and the social impacts on Great Britain datasets.Back to table of contents
This release contains data and indicators from a module being undertaken through the Office for National Statistics (ONS') Opinions and Lifestyle Survey (OPN) to understand the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on British society.
Breakdowns by age, sex, region, and country, including confidence intervals for the estimates, are contained in the Coronavirus and the social impacts on Great Britain dataset.
Where changes in results from previous weeks are presented in this bulletin, associated confidence intervals should be used to assess the statistical significance of the differences.
Sampling and weighting
In the period between 3 and 13 March 2022, we sampled 4,493 households. These were randomly selected from those that had previously completed the Labour Market Survey (LMS) or OPN. The responding sample contained 3,043 individuals, representing a 67.7% response rate.
Survey weights were applied to make estimates representative of the population (based on June 2021 population estimates). Further information on the survey design and quality can be found in the Opinions and Lifestyle Survey Quality and Methodology Information.Back to table of contents
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