As football season approaches, the National Football League, National Collegiate Athletic Association, and high schools across the country are weighing if they should have fans at games—or even play at all. On Thursday, Major League Baseball finally began its 2020 season without fans in the stands.
Even if sports leagues tried to get fans to come, they’d probably have low turnout. Only 20% of Americans say they’re comfortable enough to attend a concert, sports venue, or large gathering, finds a Fortune and SurveyMonkey poll of 2,802 U.S. adults conducted between July 17 and 21.
And 59% of Americans say it would take more than six months for them to feel comfortable enough to attend those events.
When sporting events or concerts do return, the crowd might follow partisan lines. Among Republicans, 37% are already comfortable enough to attend a concert, sports venue, or large gathering. That number is just 5% among Democrats.
It isn’t just concert venues and sport leagues that face a brutally long road to recovery: Only 43% of U.S. adults say they’re already comfortable dining inside at a restaurant, and 26% say they’re comfortable enough to patronize inside at a bar. Just 27% of frequent fliers are ready to board a flight again.
Americans have a pessimistic outlook of when their lives and the economy will return to normal. Among U.S. adults, 53% say it will take the economy longer than a year to be back to normal. Only 8% see it recovering in the next three months.
*Methodology: The Fortune-SurveyMonkey poll was conducted among a national sample of 2,802 adults in the U.S. between July 17–21. This survey’s modeled error estimate is plus or minus 3 percentage points. The findings have been weighted for age, race, sex, education, and geography.
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