Pre-covid, many had planned early retirement, but now say those plans have been scuppered by the pandemic.

Aviva’s research has found nearly one in five people say they feel less secure about their financial future. 

The 35-44 age group are the most likely (68 percent) to have felt some impact on their retirement plans from the pandemic. 

The lockdowns have been positive for some, including one in ten who used them to save more for their retirement. 

 But the study’s found 35-44 year olds are increasingly anticipating their retirement date may be pushed back. Meanwhile 16 percent say they have lost confidence that they would live comfortably once they have retired.

 Impact of the pandemic and lockdown restrictions on people’s plans to retire

Positive impacts All 16-24 25-34 35-44 45-54 55+
I feel more secure about my financial future 10% 15% 16% 13% 8% 7%
I’ve been able to save more for retirement during lockdown 10% 11% 9% 10% 9% 10%
I am more confident about living comfortably once I’ve retired 7% 16% 8% 9% 4% 4%
I may retire earlier than planned 7% 10% 10% 8% 7% 4%
Negative impacts            
I feel less secure about my financial future 18% 22% 21% 27% 19% 12%
I saved less for retirement during lockdown 12% 14% 16% 14% 12% 8%
I am less confident about being able to live comfortably once I’ve retired 12% 10% 15% 16% 13% 10%
My retirement may be pushed back 10% 12% 9% 14% 11% 7%
No impact 46% 33% 36% 32% 45% 62%


Alistair McQueen is Head of Savings & Retirement at Aviva. He said: “For many of us, the pandemic has had a profound impact on our outlook and caused us to look again at our priorities. The experience of a global health crisis has led many people to put plans on hold and consider the wider implications around significant issues like retirement plans. 


Pandemic has had profound effect on people’s priorities 

Aviva’s findings show 59 percent of people feel the pandemic has made them question what’s important in life, while half have said it has changed their priorities and wellbeing is top of the list.  This coincides with our recent report where we found employers feel they could do more for employee wellbeing.

Worryingly, more than half of people say they feel less comfortable about coping with unforeseen events than they did before. 


Stop/start plans hang in the balance 

 Aviva’s findings also show more than half of UK adults have suspended or cancelled a planned life event such as a wedding or party, during the pandemic. 

Among those affected, almost one in six have held back from starting a new job; 12 percent have thought twice about starting a new business.

 Despite more than half (54 percent) of people feeling that life has been “put on hold” during the pandemic, many are now seeking to progress quicker with their future ambitions.  Among this group, 19 percent are fast-tracking a move to a new job; 13 percent will start a new business.

Alistair McQueen said: “The experience of having decisions taken out of our hands through successive lockdowns has left many people longing for a sense of control. But much as it’s encouraging to see people striving to build more long-term savings, our findings show anxiety about the future is still weighing heavily on their minds.