People spent more on travel and leisure activities around the February half-term, according to figures out today from Barclaycard.
Britons spent 4.1% more last month than at the same time a year earlier as consumer spending power hit a seven-month high as higher wage growth, falling inflation and lower petrol costs helped boost confidence.
Barclaycard said the strength of the pound encouraged people to spend on trips abroad, with travel spending up 8% overall.
Hotel spending hit a five-month high, up 9.5%, while airline spending also picked up, growing 3.8% – nearly double the growth seen in January.
But while the volume of transactions grew, values fell 7.1% as airlines passed on the effect of lower oil prices, the report showed.
Hotel rooms also cost 1.7% less as overcapacity in the package holiday industry saw prices fall. City A.M. reported.
Barclaycard managing director Chris Wood said: “After pausing for breath in January to assess their finances post-Christmas, consumers’ higher disposable incomes and the ingrained frugality stemming from the economic downturn are leading to more frequent, but cheaper, spending trips with overall spending up as a result.”
Separate figures from Visa showed slower spending growth in February of 1.2% but also highlighted strong growth in hotels, restaurants and bars, with spending up 9% in these categories.
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