Bank Holidays raise hopes for bumper sales

Strong Easter trading has helped to set up some great opportunities for drinks sales over the string of Bank Holiday weekends in May—but the weather is likely to have the final say on the level of uplift.

CGA by NIQ’s sales data from the Easter weekend has shown how public holidays can substantially grow sales against the average same days year-on-year. With consumers having more time to spend with friends and family and take day trips or short breaks, the holidays can act as powerful sales springboards into the rest of Spring and Summer.  


CGA’s research reveals sales by value over the four-day Easter weekend were 63% ahead of the average Friday/Saturday/Sunday/Monday in 2022. Decent weather helped to more than double the sales of Cider (up 116%) over the long weekend, while Beer (up 64%), Soft Drinks (up 65%), Spirits (up 60%) and Wine (up 39%) all performed well too. 


The data shows how sales growth can stretch across all days of the long weekend, with Sunday often the pivotal day. Drinks sales this Easter Sunday (9 April) were 87% ahead of the average Sunday in 2022, with Cider (up 128%) and Spirits (up 142%) the big beneficiaries.  


The second-best performing day of the long weekend was Bank Holiday Monday (10 April), when drinks sales were 79% ahead of the average same day in 2022. Good Friday (7 April) ended 71% ahead, thanks in large part to sunny weather, though Saturday (8 April) was more muted, beating the average Saturday by 39%. Cider was again the best performing category on each day.  


May 2023 brings three Bank Holiday Mondays—on 1, 8 and 29 May, with an extra one added for the King’s coronation—and suppliers and operators will now be planning ways to optimise consumer engagement over the succession of long weekends. 


Paul Bolton, CGA client director, GB drinks, said: “Easter has been a very welcome reminder of how long and celebratory weekends can transform drinks sales in the On Premise. However, the weather can make all the difference between a bumper weekend and a washout, and the On Premise will be keeping everything crossed for warm and sunny conditions. As ever, it will be vital to understand sales trends and consumers’ latest priorities to take full advantage of the opportunities.” 


CGA by NIQ’s sales measurement data helps On Premise businesses anticipate demand and pinpoint sales opportunities on key trading periods of the year like Bank Holiday weekends. Extensive breakdowns of sales by channel, day, category and much more gives brands and venues the intelligence they need to optimise promotional strategies and gain market share. To learn more, email CGA by NIQ client director, GB drinks Paul Bolton at 

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