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Public attitudes to coronavirus: March update

This report presents findings from polling work, conducted in January and February 2021, on public attitudes to the coronavirus pandemic in Scotland.

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6. Views on current and future intentions

Surveys have examined people's attitudes towards support for Coronavirus guidance and restrictions and future plans. This section summarises data related to public confidence in current restrictions and behavioural intentions for the future.

Current restrictions

For most of Scotland 'stay at home' restrictions were in place during January and February. [11] As shown in Figure 36, confidence that restrictions and rules are working in Scotland increased between early January and late February, from 42% to 64% in agreement. The proportion who agreed they are happy to follow stricter restrictions if this stops the overall situation getting worse remained high.

Figure 36: Proportion who agreed with the statements shown [12]

Line chart showing agreement that restriction are working increased from 42% on 5-6 Jan to 64% in latest wave

Source: YouGov weekly Scotland survey. Base (n=1000-1038)

When asked about the level of restrictions currently in place in their area, three fifths reported it to be 'about right' in early January. It remained the majority view in February, albeit with a slightly lower proportion. The proportion who thought the restrictions were slightly too strict increased, from under, to just over one fifth; while the proportion who thought the restrictions were too relaxed fluctuated between 18% and 22%.

Figure 37: Whether respondents think restrictions in their area are 'too relaxed', 'strict' or 'about right'

Bar chart showing 60% thought they are about right on 5-6 Jan, this was 56% in the most recent wave

Source: YouGov weekly Scotland survey. Base (n=1007-1038)

Support for measures

Respondents were asked whether they agreed or disagreed with statements about the way restrictions were being handled in Scotland. Data labels show when statements were included in the survey. Figure 38 shows that the majority agreed that they support the way restrictions are being handled, and handled differently to the rest of the UK. Proportions in agreement remained stable at two thirds in January and February with a small decline in the most recent wave.

Figure 38: Proportion who agreed with the statements shown

Line chart showing 68% supported handling by the Scottish Government on 5-6 Jan, this was 62% in the most recent wave.

Source: YouGov weekly Scotland survey. Base (n=1000-1038)

Future intentions

To find out about more about travel intentions for later in the year respondents were asked to select statements about holidays which apply to them. Holidays were defined in the question as including both long and short breaks. Overall 36% indicated they expect to be able to go on holiday(s) this year, including 7% who expect to be able to go on holiday(s) once they have been vaccinated. 10% indicated they may have to travel outside of Scotland for other reasons.

Figure 39: Proportion who selected each description about travel plans as applying to them

Bar chart showing 22% expect to be able to go on holidays but will wait before planning, 8% have booked and expect to take holidays

Source: YouGov weekly Scotland survey, 12-13 January. Base (n=1038)

Contact

Email: covid-19.behaviours@gov.scot

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