Data from Barclaycard, which sees nearly half of the nation’s credit and debit card transactions, reveals that spending on essentials declined 0.9 per cent in December overall but pubs and takeaways saw substantial rises in spending.
Many retailers also continued to see contractions in year-on-year spending: clothing spend was down 3.3 per cent, while specialist retailers such as toys and computer game stores saw a decline of 4.0 per cent.
However, on a more positive note spending on non-essentials grew 1.8 per cent year-on-year. Partly driving this growth was eating and drinking, which increased by 9.7 per cent as Brits enjoyed themselves during the festive period. However, the nation prioritised going to the pub (11.7 per cent) and takeaways (12.5 per cent) over eating out, as restaurants saw a 2.6 per cent decline.
Entertainment was also a bright spot, increasing by 5.5 per cent – bolstered by a rise in cinema sales of 19.0 per cent as crowds flocked to watch Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker and Frozen II – both in the top four performing films of 2019. Digital content and subscriptions services also continue to enjoy strong growth, rising 14.7 per cent.
Following the General Election consumers showed renewed confidence in the UK economy, with four in 10 (41 per cent) indicating they were feeling upbeat – up 10 percentage points on November and the highest level throughout all of 2019.
Takeaway and delivered food sales today is a major revenue stream for the UK restaurant industry thanks to online ordering. Restaurants are benefiting significantly from soaring demand for ready-to-eat meals, professionally prepared, ordered online, to be eaten at home.
In the UK 7.5 billion food deliveries were made in 2019, an increase in UK food deliveries of 39% in three years. Growth most business sectors would relish. Click and collect for restauranteurs offers the opportunity to take advantage of this high growth sector.