‘New Year, New You’ spending takes off in first two weeks of January

Spending on gyms up 17% versus last year, sports clubs up 40%

Bank of Ireland credit and debit card data for the first two weeks of January reveals that ‘New Year, New You’ spending in gyms and sports clubs shot upwards compared to last January. Many consumers are focusing on fitness and health, with spending on gyms and fitness clubs up 17% and spend on sports clubs (e.g. golf, tennis, football) rising by 40% compared to the same period last year.

However, early January data shows we’re not all punishing ourselves, with social spending up 7% on the first two weeks of last year. Restaurant outlay rose by 9%, fast-food was up 6% and pub spending rose by 4%. It seems that ‘going out was the new staying in’ for many, with off-licence spending declining by 8% during the same period.

Movie-lovers flocked to the cinema, with big-screen spending rising 32% as Irish actors earned international recognition for their performances, and tasty treats provide popular too with spending in sweet shops (+14%) and bakeries (+13%) rising.

Nationwide consumer spending rose by 9% overall compared to 2023, with consumers in Galway (+13%) leading the way in the spending stakes, followed by Longford (+11%), Wicklow (+10%), Kildare (+9%), Kerry (+9%), Mayo (+9%) and Westmeath (+9%).

Commenting on Bank of Ireland’s January Spending Pulse, Jilly Clarkin, Head of Customer Journeys & SME Markets at Bank of Ireland said“New Year, New You has definitely taken off for many, with a significant year on year spike in spending on gyms and sports clubs. But spending in the first two weeks of January is actually a mixed picture, as consumers also sought to keep the festive spirit alive and enjoyed themselves in pubs and restaurants. It will be interesting to see if the focus on health and fitness turns out to be a marathon or a sprint, and will those best intentions fall by the wayside as the year progresses?”

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