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Drinkers set to spend £447m in pubs when lockdown lifts

Written by: Emma Lunn
Research from has revealed that almost a quarter (23%) of over 18s are planning to hit the pub within the first six days of restrictions being lifted, and almost one in 10 on the very first day.

With an average spend of £52.48 per person attending within the first three days (16%), that would equate to a national spend of £447m in the hospitality sector by Thursday 15 April.

Young people (18 to 24-year-olds) will be first in line at the bar, with a quarter (26%) planning their first pint within three days of pubs reopening. Older generations are set to be more cautious, with only 15% of 35 to 44-year-olds and 11% of 45 to 54-year-olds saying the same.

Across the UK, the North East and Scotland are the regions most likely to hit the pub early, with 12% expecting to go on the first day, and 11% of those in Yorkshire. In comparison, Wales is least likely with only 3% followed by the North West at 4%.

So what does this mean for the economy? Brits have been planning for the end of lockdown, with one in nine (11%) putting money aside to go to the pub, 21% to go for a meal, a quarter (25%) to book a holiday abroad, and 24% to travel to another part of the UK.

At the pub, on average people plan to spend £52.48, with 26% of respondents planning to fork out more than they would pre-pandemic. One in four (25%) plans to spend £21 to £40, while a further one in nine (11%) plans to blow £150 to £250.

But it’s not just pubs that will be seeing the benefits when restrictions ease. After a year of home cooked food, Brits are just as keen to see the return of restaurant dining, with 17% of people planning to go out for a meal within the first three days.

On average, they are planning to spend £59.69 on their first meal out, with 36% planning to spend more than they would have before lockdown.

Holidays might feel like a distant memory, but when it comes to booking a trip abroad people are remaining cautious, with 30% of people planning to wait more than four weeks before making a commitment.

Within the UK, however, people are more optimistic. Nearly a quarter (24%) of Brits are planning to travel to another part of the UK, whether that is to visit loved ones or visit another part of the UK, within the first two weeks of lockdown lifting.

When that first holiday since lockdown does happen, 43% plan to treat themselves by spending more on a break abroad than before the pandemic.

On average Brits are planning to spend £1,852, with one in nine (11%) planning to go all out and spend £3,000 to £4,000 on foreign travel, and £328.55 travelling within the UK.

James Andrews, personal finance expert at said: “Lockdown has been tough on many industries, but the hospitality industry has been hit particularly hard with changing restrictions across the country since the first national lockdown eased in June.

“It’s promising to see that as restrictions begin to ease, people plan to support their local businesses. With GDP falling 2.9% in January 2021, this support will be hugely important to the UK economy, and indeed to individual businesses who have had to navigate these uncertain times.”

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