Beaming sunshine and no restrictions on daily life to curb Covid-19 infections prompted Brits to pour into pub gardens, zoos and football grounds over the Easter weekend, fresh research reveals.
Temperatures of over 20 degrees notched in many parts of the UK across last weekend led to a boom in spending on some activities that was higher than the Easter weekend before the onset of the virus, according to Barclaycard.
Brits spent 74 per cent more on pints and at night clubs compared to the Easter weekend of 2019.
Zoos and aquariums were big beneficiaries, with consumers splashing out more than double the amount they spent in 2019.
Consumers also spent a quarter more on fast food compared to three years ago and over 400 per cent more at sport centres compared to last year.
This year’s Easter weekend was the first without any Covid-19 restrictions since 2019.
The upbeat data indicates households shook off the cost of living squeeze to celebrate in the hottest temperatures of the year so far.
Harshna Cayley, head of online payments at Barclaycard, said: “The sunny weather combined with the first restriction free Easter Weekend since 2019 lifted the spirits of Brits as they enjoyed days out and supported businesses as they return to normal operations across the UK.”
The burst in spending will provide welcome relief for pubs, bars, retailers and restaurants ahead of an expected spending slowdown caused by wages failing to keep pace with rampant inflation.
The cost of living is already running at seven per cent, the highest level since 1992, but could hit double-digits in October when the energy watchdog hikes the cap on bills again.
Households have also been saddled with a 1.25 percentage point national insurance hike and higher interest rates.