The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic definitely re-jigged a bunch of our priorities. Instead of hitting the pub on the weekend, we were forced to sit with our own thoughts (yuck), work and home became intertwined and our favourite celebrities slowly became conspiracy theory peddling numpties.
Naturally, amidst all this change, our spending habits have been totally switched-up as well. According to Bankwest Spend Trends data, West Australian folk ramped up spending in hardware stores by 32%, bicycle shops by 92% and in “special trade” sectors by 34% since the iso-rules were implemented.
But, If you’re the kind of guy or gal who enjoys indulging in a routine weekend brunch outing, your bank account is probably wondering where that delicious helping of hollandaise sauce has gone.
This change is actually a pretty good learning experience in managing our spending and savings when you think about it. In maybe not having to spend on something like public transport, it’s a stark way to assess where exactly your money was disappearing to pre-pandemic.
So, with that being said, here’s a rundown on where Aussies have been spending their cash during iso, so you can measure up how your spending habits compare with the rest of the population.
Ya’ll Are Hitting Food Delivery Apps Like Crazy
I’ve generally never been one to indulge in food delivery services, but there’s something about the pandemic that has truly made me crave the warmth of a soggy, hefty burrito that has weathered a fateful, juicy journey to land on my front door like no other.
According to Alphabeta (a real-time spending tracker), I’m not the only one – since the first week of April, food delivery services have seen spending increase 192% more than the pre-pandemic norm. In that, Deliveroo also noted that the dish people were purchasing most was a humble serving of fish and chips, after a 597% rise in people searching their local grease trap.
Before all of ~this~ happened, we were spending on average at least $52 a week dining out. Since the pandemic hit, spending on cafes and restaurants nationwide is down 46% in comparison.
In terms of other food-related spending, Nielsen Homescan data showed that Aussies were spending an additional 37% on coffee beans, grinders and other related paraphernalia during their weekly grocery shop, compared to a year ago – it’s clear we’re all yearning for the sensuous latte art our hot baristas would serve up, in an attempt to recreate it at home.
Dayum, You’re Getting Fit
Since places like gyms, sporting facilities and of course ScoMo’s favourite,”BAR-RAY” (Barre) were amongst the first to get shut down in the wake of COVID-19, health membership spending is down 95%.
However, that’s not to say Aussies aren’t on a mission to come out of this pandemic with the tightest cabooses and most shredded abs possible.
Groupon reckons cycling accessory purchases have increased five-fold over the last fortnight, whilst sales for dog collars and leads more than quadrupled, with more of us taking our puppers out for runs. I feel as though this has something to do with all of the fish and chips we’ve been wolfing down, but I’m being merely suspicious.
Considering the many of us have found our groove with home workouts and have invested in weights and other gear, it could be time to work out whether you need that gym membership or class subscription, ultimately keeping more cash in your pocket longterm.
Our Euro Dreams Have Been Kissed Goodbye
Personally, I can’t help but chuckle at the influencers who are so desperately clinging to relevance right now by re-hashing old content from their 2k19 summer Euro trips with captions like “Miss this x”, it’s one of the upsides to this chaos. Maybe I’m a wicked, heartless wench, but anyway.
The Australian tourism industry has been totally railed by the COVID-19 pandemic, with projected losses of up to $3 billion per month according to Australia, Tourism and Transport Forum CEO Margy Osmond.
Considering we’re all heading out on the town way less and with many working from home, there’s also been a 7.1% fall in public transport spending too.
Now that some restrictions are starting to lift, and domestic travel during late 2020 is being encouraged, we could see a spike in travel spending amongst Aussies keen to explore the country post-lockdown.
Getting Cosy Is A Huge Priority
I’d definitely never heard of the phrase “loungewear” before the pandemic, but now I don’t know how I lived without my various luxuriously soft pastel-coloured matching trackie sets before all of this.
When the time came to bunker down and truly embrace the hermit lifestyle back in April, according to Groupon, Aussies’ spending on indoor decor like bathrobes and candles rose by 4820%. We definitely vibe with this intense level of pandemic-induced self-love.
Alphabeta also noted that purchases of furniture and office equipment were 57% higher in the first week of April than the last week of March, whilst home improvement spending was up 38%.
We’re Not Just Twiddling Our Thumbs
It’s pretty damn cute that the world thought that by spending more time at home, it immediately meant baking bread, sewing and water painting. Cute, and definitely not weird at all.
With an overall 16.4% fall in recreation spending (thanks to restrictions on gatherings), Groupon reckons the demand for games & puzzles increased by 1725% in just two weeks after iso started. Arts, craft and stationery” was also a top-selling category onsite, experiencing an increase in traffic of over 1500%, so we better come out of all this as Zoomer Picassos or it was truly all for nothing.
Of course, all these don’t take your objectives or financial situation into account and you should seek relevant professional advice.