Christmas shopping set to peak on 23 December
Christmas shopping is set to peak on 23 December, new data from AIB shows.
Its latest spend trend report shows that 2.8 million card transactions were carried out in shops on that date last year. That was up 84% on the average day in 2022.
The busiest time for spending in store was between 12-1pm last year, with over €12m spent in that hour alone.
The data shows that women spend more than men on Christmas shopping leading up to the big day, except on Christmas Eve.
“It’s the busiest time of the year for many businesses and they will welcome the fact that this year is on course to be as busy as ever, particularly in those final days in the run up to Christmas Day,” said AIB’s Head of SME Banking John Brennan.
“Men appear to leave a lot of their shopping until the last minute, over lunch on Christmas Eve,” he added.
When buying jewellery, men spent almost twice as much as women in the lead up to Christmas, with the the average transaction for men €208, and for women €106.
23 December was the busiest day of the year for grocery shopping, with spend up 191% on the average day.
Last year, 93% of that grocery spend was in store, while just 7% was online.
According to today’s data, people in Wicklow spent the most on their cards in store and online in December, with an average spend of €1,941.
This was followed by an average spend of €1,931 for those in Kildare and €1,925 in Meath.
People from Donegal spent the least with an average of €1,512, followed by Monaghan at €1,636 and Leitrim at €1,654.
The AIB trend spend report suggests that the tradition of people travelling to Dublin for Christmas shopping on 8 December may be coming to an end.
AIB said it did not notice an increase in spending on this day last year, or the year before.
Not surprisingly, Christmas Day was the quietist day for shopping in 2022. 85,000 transactions were carried out in shops, mostly on fuel.
When it comes to spending in pubs, 23 December was the busiest day last year with €5.2 million spent.
Men spent almost twice as much as women in pubs, at €3.4m compared to €1.8m.