Footfall is expected to be 16% lower than last year on the day of the Royal Wedding, as consumers spend the day celebrating at street parties instead of hitting the high street.
Consumer behaviour analyst Experian FootFall, which made the prediction, said most consumers would “stock up” on new outfits in the days leading up to Friday’s nuptials, and would spend the day celebrating.
“Shoppers will steer clear of stores [on Friday], seeing this as a ‘gift day’ for socialising. While there are few reference points for similar holidays, Experian FootFall predicts that the day will follow a similar pattern to the preceding Good Friday, with a similar dip in shopper activity,” a spokesman said.
According to Experian, Easter Monday footfall was 25% down on last year, when Easter fell much earlier. However, it has predicted a 2% increase in footfall from today until Thursday, as many consumers have taken the time off work in order to take advantage of the adjacent bank holiday weekends over Easter and the Royal Wedding, and turn it into an 11-day vacation.
It also predicted Saturday would see some “bounce back recovery of lost footfall from the wedding day dip”, before returning to more predictable shopping patterns.
FootFall product manager Neil Bennett said: “Current progressive footfall for this year is down by around -1.2%, year-on-year in the UK, but buoyed by a strong January.
“February and March were more challenging, with run-rate performance closer to -2.0%. The addition of an extra holiday day for the Royal Wedding, the timing of Easter and for some, better weather will mean more leisure time for people, it won’t necessarily mean they spend this time shopping.”