Boxing Day footfall drops 75.9% as Brits stay at home

Boxing Day covid-19 pandemic tier 4 springboard
Footfall was down year-on-year where shops could reopen with more shoppers choosing to stay at home during the festive period
// Footfall on Boxing Day in Tier 4 areas dropped by 75.9% compared to the same day in 2019
// Footfall in Tiers 2 and 3 fell by 33.1% and 38.5% respectively
// Shopping centres were the worst hit, with footfall down 65.4% year on year

New research has found that shoppers remained at home on Boxing Day as Tier 4 restrictions spread across more regions.

Overall footfall on Boxing Day in Tier 4 areas – where all non-essential retail stores are closed – dropped by 75.9 per cent compared to the same day in 2019, according to figures from Springboard.

Shopping centres were the worst hit, with footfall down 65.4 per cent year on year, while high streets saw a 63.3 per cent decline.


READ MORE: Avoid Boxing Day sales crowds, says PM


Meanwhile, retail parks fared better, with a 45 per cent drop compared with 2019.

Footfall in Tier 4 regions declined 75.9 per cent compared with Boxing Day last year, while footfall in Tiers 2 and 3 fell by 33.1 per cent and 38.5 per cent respectively.

On December 26, more areas of the UK were placed under stricter measures, with 40 per cent of England’s population now subject to Tier 4 restrictions.

Wales, Northern Ireland and most of mainland Scotland are also under lockdown regulations.

Footfall was down year-on-year where shops could reopen with more shoppers choosing to stay at home during the festive period.

“Boxing Day has been attracting less retail footfall each year in five of the past seven years as shoppers turn online to grab the best bargains,” Springboard insights director Diane Wehrle said.

“Interestingly, Boxing Day has been evolving into more of a leisure-based day with shoppers starting their trips later on in the day and combining shopping trips with eating out and catching up with family and friends.

“The closure of hospitality in tier three and above means shoppers have remained at home and footfall has declined significantly.

“We undoubtedly expected a drop in footfall due to the closure of non-essential retail in tier four; however, it is evident that the repercussions of the Covid-19 pandemic are continuing to make retail destinations less attractive across tier two and tier three as well.

“This year, after spending so much time online, consumers are now experts at online shopping, whereby they know they can enjoy the same discounts from the comfort and safety of their own home.”

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