Mid-term saw Irish card spending on cinemas soar

It was a big screen bonanza over the mid-term break in Ireland as parents and teenagers spent their money on entertainment, according to the latest Bank of Ireland card spending data.

Bank of Ireland’s Spending Pulse, which analysed debit and credit card spend, saw a surge in card spending during the recent mid-term break as parents struggled to keep kids entertained.

Trips to catch the latest big-screen releases shot up by 69% with overall weekly spending rising by 10% when compared to the previous week.

“People flocked to the cinema in their droves, but it wasn’t just a popcorn fest for mid-term break as museums and theatres filled up too”

With schools closed across the country many parents looked to fill their children’s time off with a range of outings, with spend in swimming pools spiking by 30% and outlay in museums rising by 27%. The analysis reveals that it wasn’t just a case of parents cajoling their kids to museums either, with spending in museums amongst 13 – 17-year-olds ticking up by 23%.

Mayo residents (+47%) posted the highest mid-term spending increase amongst the 26 counties, followed by consumers in Laois (+29%), Cavan (+23%), Roscommon (+23%) and Leitrim (+23%). Spending in Westmeath during mid-term break was completely flat (0%) when compared to the previous week, whilst increased outlay in Carlow (+4%), Dublin (+4%) and Kildare (+7%) was modest compared to many other counties.

The nation’s theatres were busy during mid-term, posting a spending hike of +16%, and it won’t come as a surprise to anyone to learn that mid-term spending in sweet shops (+14%) and fast-food outlets (+7%) rose higher. Teenagers spent their money (or that given to them by their parents!) in a variety of locations, with sports clubs (+120%), shopping centres (+69%) and swimming pools (+55%) all proving popular.

“The age-old question faced by parents trying to entertain their children never gets any easier to solve, but according to our latest Spending Pulse it looks like they gave it a good go recently,” said Jilly Clarkin, head of Customer Journeys & SME Markets at Bank of Ireland.

“People flocked to the cinema in their droves, but it wasn’t just a popcorn fest for mid-term break as museums and theatres filled up too.

“A spending rise in shopping centres and fast-food outlets is to be expected, with teens themselves posting a total spending spike of 51% during their week off, but a 30% hike in swimming pool spend indicates that many children also kept active in their time away from the classroom.”

Main image at top: Photo by Krists Luhaers on Unsplash

John Kennedy
Award-winning ThinkBusiness.ie editor John Kennedy is one of Ireland's most experienced business and technology journalists.