How long does Wales expect it will take for life to return to ‘normal’ after Covid-19?

As Covid-19 lockdown restrictions are gradually eased, findings from our June 2020 Wales Omnibus survey show that almost four in ten of the Welsh public (37%) anticipate being able to attend sports events or music concerts within the next six months. Fewer – around three in ten (29%) – expect to be able to take foreign holidays within the same time period without a quarantine or any restrictions on travel.

People expect it will take longer for life to return to ‘normal’ with everyone living more or less how they used to, however – nearly two thirds of the Welsh population (64%) think this will take at least 12 months or more. This is almost identical to people’s expectations on when a coronavirus vaccine will be ready – 65% expect this to take at least 12 months. For a minority, around one in twenty people feel life will never return to normal (6%) and that a vaccine will never be available (5%).

The public in Wales are pessimistic about the timescales for economic recovery – most (55%) do not expect an economic recovery for at least two years, and almost one in twenty (4%) are of the opinion the economy will never recover to where it was before Covid-19.


Figure 1: Thinking now about the current public health crisis and what the future holds, when, if at all, do you think the following will happen… (%)

Source: Beaufort Wales Omnibus Survey* – 10-22 June 2020 (Sample size: 1,000).
*Interviews for the June 2020 survey were undertaken online, instead of face-to-face as usual, because of Covid-19.


Anticipated timescales for a return to ‘normal’ life vary considerably by age. 16 to 24 year olds are most likely to expect life to return to normal relatively quickly – 43% of those in this age group expect life to return to ‘normal’ within six months or so, while fewer than one in five (18%) of those aged 65 or over think normality will return within six months. Men also expect an earlier return to normality than women – 32% anticipate this will happen within six months or so, compared with just 23% of women.

Expectations around economic recovery also differ markedly by age, with older people far more likely to anticipate a protracted period of recovery. 74% of those aged 65+ expect economic recovery will take two years or more, while just 32% of 16 to 24 year olds think it will take this long for the economy to recover to its pre-coronavirus level.


For more information about our Wales Omnibus Surveys click here.