// UK economy forecast to enjoy £2.5bn boost this week as indoor hospitality reopens in England & Wales
// This will have a knock-on effect on retail this week, with sales forecast to be much higher than May 2019
// Shoppers are also estimated to spend 41.2% more on Saturday alone compared to the same day in 2019
The UK economy is expected to enjoy a boost in the coming days amid forecasts that consumers will spend billions in the first week of indoor hospitality reopening.
According to VoucherCodes and the Centre for Retail Research (CRR), 104 million people will head out to pubs, restaurants and cafes this week to spend up to £2.5 billion.
Today marks the start of the next stage in the lockdown exit road map for England and Wales, whereby hospitality venues can reopen their indoor premises and serve customers inside for the first time since December.
- Consumer spending reaches pre-pandemic levels in UK towns rather than cities
- April online retail sales holds up as shoppers returned to high streets
- Retail sales rise after easing of lockdown, but not yet out of the woods
VoucherCodes and the CRR estimate that venues will seat 13.6 million customers between today and Thursday, and that they will spend £297 million eating indoors.
That figure is expected to surge over Saturday and Sunday, with 34 million people set to visit hospitality venues to spend over £389 million and £426 million respectively.
As a result, the knock-on effect this would have on retail sales this week is forecast to be much higher than pre-pandemic levels in May 2019.
Shoppers are also estimated to spend 41.2 per cent more on Saturday, almost £427 million, compared to the same day in 2019 when it recorded £301.84 million in sales.
“It’s been an incredibly tough year for the hospitality industry with large periods of closure, so it’s particularly encouraging that this report forecasts a quick and strong recovery over the next couple of years,” VoucherCodes commercial senior director Angus Drummond said.