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Close to 20% of population can't afford monthly get-together with friends, family

More than 1 in 10 people in the EU cannot afford to get together with friends or family for a drink

1 December 2016, 12:21pm
Malta registered high in a Eurostat survey where respondents said they did not afford to get together with friends or family for a drink or meal at least once a month.

19.2% of respondents in Malta said they were unable to do so.

According to Eurostat, 13.0% of the population aged 16 or over living in the European Union reported in 2014 not being able to get together with friends/family for a drink or meal at least once a month due to lack of resources, while 17.8% could not afford to regularly participate in a leisure activity.

Working age people (aged 25 to 64) were slightly more affected. The shares in this age group stood at 13.9% and 19.6% respectively, while they were 11.0% and 16.3% for young people (aged 16 to 24) and 11.2% and 13.5% for the elderly (aged 65 or over).

These selected findings are extracted from a special data collection of 2014 on complementary variables on material deprivation.

Around one third of the population in Hungary (36.5%), Romania (35.7%) and Bulgaria (30.0%) said they could not afford to get together with friends/family for a drink/meal at least once a month. High shares were also observed in Greece (20.7%), Malta (19.2%), Ireland (18.4%) and Lithuania (17.4%). The elderly in Romania are particularly affected: in the age group over 65, the share there reaches 43.0%. In Hungary, the share is higher among the young (40.0%).

At the opposite end the scale, the share was below 1% in all age groups in Sweden. Less than 5% of the population feel unable to get together with friends/family for a drink/meal at least once a month also in Finland (1.5%), Denmark (3.2%), the Netherlands (3.3%), the Czech Republic (3.4%) and Luxembourg (4.1%).

Very few unable to regularly participate in a leisure activity in Finland, Luxembourg and Sweden

Across Member States in 2014, more than half (56.1%) of the population in Romania could not afford to regularly participate in a leisure activity, followed by Bulgaria (37.5%), Lithuania (35.2%) and Hungary (32.4%).

In contrast, less than 5% of the population feel unable to regularly participate in a leisure activity in Finland (3.2%), Luxembourg (4.0%) and Sweden (4.2%).

In most Member States, the working age population is particularly affected. The only exceptions are Denmark, Ireland and the United Kingdom, where the share is higher among the young, and Estonia, Romania and Latvia, where it is higher among the elderly.