Half of the country’s publicans have experienced a drop in turnover in the past year, according to an industry survey released by AIB.
The bank’s report into the licenced trade sector found that a quarter of pubs surveyed had reduced their weekday opening hours in the past year, with that proportion rising to a third in rural areas.
One in six pubs have also reduced their weekend opening hours in an attempt to reduce costs.
The survey, conducted alongside the Vintners Federation of Ireland and the Licenced Vintners Association, found that the average age of pub-goers is increasing, with two-thirds of customers aged over 30.
The behaviour of customers has also changed, with 71% of those surveyed saying they now arrive later at the pub and stay for a shorter period of time.
Despite this 52% of publicans believe that their own business will improve in the next three years, while 37% say it will take five years for the industry to recover.
Publicans are increasingly turning to the likes of food to help their bottom line, with 35% seeing turnover in that segment increase.
The vast majority of those surveyed had also organised entertainment events in the past year in an attempt to attract more business, while nearly half are planning improvements to their business in the next three years.