According to data compiled by AIB from over one million card transactions, consumer spending grew by only 0.41 per cent compared to March. The number of transactions recorded last month has declined as compared to March. Despite this, the average daily spend in April remained unchanged from the month of €80m as consumers spent more per transaction. Consumers also embraced the opportunity to pay digitally, with digital wallet transactions increasing by 8 percent during the period. Overall, card transactions declined by 4 per cent. Despite evidence rising prices are putting pressure on household budgets, the extended Easter break provided a chance for consumers to socialize with spending in restaurants and pubs up 9pc and 4pc respectively in the month of April.
Tackation proved popular for Easter break as well, accounting for about one-fifth of hotel expenses across the country. Irish consumers spent over €63,000 an hour in the hotel sector throughout the month, with Dublin having the highest amount of total hotel spending.
However, coastal destinations benefited from the highest increase in total spending last month. Donegal reported a 27 percent increase in spending, followed by Sligo with a 26 percent increase. Expenses in Kerry also rose by a quarter during the month.
AIB reported that consumer spending on airline tickets declined last month, with airline spending down 3 per cent. Purchases of electronics and health and beauty items also declined by 4 per cent and 3 per cent, respectively.
Grocery and hardware spending remained relatively flat, with clothing spending up 11 percent in April, although spring fashion demand picked up.
Young people spent less last month, with those under the age of 25 falling by 3 percent. Spending among all other age groups was rising in April.
John Brennan, AIB head of SMEs, said: “Consumers transacted two million times less than in March, despite spending the same amount. This means they had a higher average transaction during April, possibly due to higher ticket spending over the Easter holiday. The hospitality and lodging sectors enjoyed a positive April, with increased consumer spending in seaside towns and hotels across the country due to school holidays.