Early kick-off for Lions rugby fans nets pubs £770,000*
Landlords praying for a strong Lions performance after early opening pays dividends for 1st Test
Thousands of pubs across the UK will open early this Saturday, as the industry looks to capitalise on interest in the second Lions Test against New Zealand, due to kick off at 08:30am on Saturday.
According to data from Worldpay, the early start last weekend was worth an extra £770,000* to pubs that laid on big-screens, breakfasts and beer for hard core rugby fans.
Having seen the Lions put to the sword by the All Blacks last weekend, landlords will be hoping for a fight-back from the Lions to avoid a dead rubber and set up a potential lucrative decider next weekend.
Welsh Lions fans took the crown of most eager supporters last weekend, with the early opening netting local hostelries an extra £35,000* on top of their usual day’s trading. In Cardiff alone, pubs were 92%** busier than normal during the match.
Pubs in London were similarly packed with transactions up 86%** versus the average. Meanwhile in Scotland, which has the fewest representatives in the Lions squad, interest in heading to the pub to watch the match was relatively muted. Pubs that opened for the match were just 18% busier than normal.
James Frost, UK CMO, Worldpay, commented: “Rugby fans are well accustomed to getting up early to watch their team take on the best of the southern hemisphere, and as our data shows there’s a fairly decent market for bacon sandwiches and pints of bitter during a Lions tour to New Zealand.
“Pubs in Cardiff and across Wales will be looking forward to another busy morning. But not everyone will have been cheering their decision to open early and a quick glance at the team-sheet for the Second Test suggests pubs in Scotland might be giving their early start a miss this weekend.”
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About the data:
*Calculation is based on sales processed between 08:00am and 11am on 24th June using total card transactions processed by Worldpay in pubs that were open during this time. Total is based on the assumption that total sales processed by Worldpay equates to 40% of total card transactions over that period.
**Calculation is based on a comparison between the number of card transactions processed by Worldpay in pubs on 24th June (08:00am -11am) and card transactions processed among pubs open during the same time on 20th May and 27th May.
For more information please contact:
Harry Ronaldson, Golin: T + 44 (0) 20 7067 0144
Angela Woodward, Worldpay: T: +44 (0)203 664 2605