AIB has released its 2018 Pubs Outlook, which finds a 6% increase in spending by UK visitors to Irish pubs in the 12 months to the end of October 2017, despite a decline in visitor numbers from the UK.
The report utilises data mined by AIB Merchant Services from card usage information, which finds that UK customers make up 6.1% of Dublin market customers, while 16.4% of total sales in Donegal come from the UK market.
Food was a key driver of growth for the period, with food service in pubs reaching a market size of €982m in 2017, up 3% year on year. Irish publicans are accepting card payments in growing numbers, with some city centre pubs now achieving 80% of their turnover from credit and debit cards according to Visa.
David McCarthy, Head of Hospitality & Tourism, AIB Retail & Business Banking said “Strong economic growth, customer sentiment, falling unemployment and a record year for tourism means that the Irish pub sector is performing strongly and there is a sense of optimism within the sector that we haven’t seen in many years.”