Patron Surveys and Consumer Behavior

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"There are very few issues of taste about which people of all ages, genders and geographic regions can agree. That's why it catches [our] attention when an issue garners the overwhelming support of the public. And it is clear from our surveys that the vast majority of Americans prefer their restaurants, bars and clubs to be smokefree."
- Tim Zagat, CEO and Co-founder of the New York-based Zagat Survey

All statistically reliable and verifiable studies conducted on patron behaviors and consumer preferences show overwhelmingly favorable responses to smokefree laws. The public is very supportive of smokefree laws; it is only tobacco industry manipulation that creates a sense of controversy about them. It is important to distinguish between favorable studies conducted by independent researchers and academics and unfavorable studies sponsored by the tobacco industry, which rely solely on anecdotal information and predictions.





© Americans for Nonsmokers' Rights, revised 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009.


  1. PRNewswire, "J.D. Power and Associates reports: hotel guests are considerably less satisfied in 2008, primarily due to issues with amenities and guest room features,", July 29, 2008.
  2. Moore, D., "Increased Support for Smoking Bans in Public Places: But still widespread opposition to complete ban," The Gallup Organization, July 20, 2005. Available at Accessed on July 20, 2005.
  3. Zagat Survey, LLC, "Zagat releases 2008 America's Top Restaurants Survey showing U.S. dining is getting greener, healthier and more casual," PRNewswire, October 24, 2007.
  4. Zagat, T., "Support for smoking ban," Philadelphia Business Journal, May 1, 2006.
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  20. [n.a.], "[press release re: "Helena Voters Overwhelmingly Support the City's Smoking Ordinance, and Believe it Should Be Fully Enforced Without Delay."]," Harstad Strategic Research, Inc., June 27, 2004.
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  23. The Zagat Survey released its 2009 New Orleans, Louisiana, guide in January. The survey found that 66% of residents were in favor of smokefree bars, clubs and lounges.
  24. Zagat, "Spending, tipping up; closings, service gripes down; newcomers gather steam, great year ahead; smoking ban fuels dining out; bottled water given the boot - 71% of diners prefer NYC tap," PRNewswire, October 20, 2003.
  25. Lam, T.H.; Janghorbani, M.; Hedley, A.J.; Ho, S.Y.; McGhee, S.M.; Chan, B., "Public opinion on smoke-free policies in restaurants and predicted effect on patronage in Hong Kong," Tobacco Control 11(3): 195-200, September 2002.
  26. [n.a.], "[Press release re: Poll shows 98% of us believe Irish workplaces are healthier as a result of the smoke-free law,'" Office of Tobacco Control, March 29, 2005. Downloaded at
  27. Piper, M., "Support for smokefree hospitality venues has increased," Smokefree Times, Issue 74, December 2004.
  28. Viriyachaiyo, V.; Lim, A., "Tourists' attitudes towards ban on smoking in air-conditioned hotel lobbies in Thailand," Tobacco Control 18(3): 238-240, June 2009.
  29. Auspoll, January 2000.