Pubs, bars and nightclubs, meanwhile, saw a collective surge in spending of 74.2% over the four day holiday (2-5 June), which commemorated Queen Elizabeth's 70-year reign.
“Spending soared across many sectors during the Platinum Jubilee weekend as Brits came together to celebrate and enjoy the sunny weather,” says Rob Cameron, CEO of Barclaycard Payments.
“Despite wider concerns around the cost of living, the hospitality sector especially will be pleased by this welcome boost, having missed out on two years of unrestricted trading.”
However, while transaction volumes rose over the weekend, Barclaycard warned that rising living costs are pushing consumers to rein in discretionary spending, reporting an overall decline in consumer card spending on eating and drinking out in May compared to April, with a 5.9% decline in restaurants and a 1.2% decline in bars, pubs, and clubs.
Overall spending grew 9.3% in May compared to the same period in 2021, inflated both by the rising cost of living and dampened demand last year due to the travel and hospitality restrictions.
Spending on non-essential items grew 11.6% compared to May 2021, largely driven by a 67.2% rise in hospitality and leisure spending due to the lifting of lockdown restrictions. This was the smallest uplift in non-essential spending since March 2021 owing to the impact of rising living costs on discretionary spending.
Public transport spending rose by 83.3% as workers return to offices and city centres following the lifting of work-from-home guidance, while supermarkets and specialist food and drink stores saw slight declines compared to May 2021.
Barclaycard attributes this to fewer people cooking at home due to the easing of hospitality restrictions as well as 41% of consumers looking for ways to reduce the cost of their weekly shop.
In addition, the travel industry outpaced inflation and saw year-on-year growth of 189.7%, with growth in airlines and accommodation bookings.
“The cost of living squeeze is clearly influencing discretionary spending habits, with figures showing a decline in subscriptions, and a drop in spending at restaurants, bars, pubs and clubs,” says José Carvalho, head of consumer products at Barclaycard.
“Despite this, there are some encouraging signs, particularly in travel industry, as Brits’ appetite for going abroad continues to grow as we approach the summer holidays.
“While consumer confidence continues to fall, we hope to see at least a short-term boost thanks to the Jubilee Weekend, and the recently announced £400 energy bill discount coming in October.”