Easter celebrations this year brought some added spice with them. Not only were we celebrating the traditional seasonal stuff and the influx of delicious chocolate eggs into our homes, but we were also toasting being ever so close to beginning our gradual return to normality. The first day of that transition on April 12th brings with it some welcome returns – the reopening of shops, pubs and restaurants, for example. The prospect of all restrictions being removed in summer has us all pondering what we’ll do with our much-deserved liberty.
For many of us who have either accidentally or intentionally saved some money over the past year, one of the first things we’ll want to do is spend some cash. But what on? Starting with the trivial and escalating through to the rather serious, here are five post-lockdown items that could be on most shopping lists.
A pint and a haircut
A lot of socially starved folk out there are desperate to experience the “normal” fun stuff again. The first port of call for millions of Brits will be the nearest pub that will have them. Not a big financial spend, admittedly – although it could be depending on the night you end up having.
The next move for many will be a haircut, with much of the general population having to let their hair do as it pleases through the early course of 2021. While the restrictions of the past 12 months have seen many of us turn our own living rooms into barbershops and salons (to extremely varied levels of success), the appetite for a proper haircut and feeling “fresh” again is undeniable.
The only problem might be getting an appointment so soon after April 12th, with barbers and hairdressers set to take on VIP nightclub levels of popularity in the first few weeks.
A day out
Because the lockdown has done so much to restrict our ability to travel and enjoy quality time with family and friends, the lifting of travel restrictions and reopening of local points of interest should see a huge amount of day trippers making plans with their loved ones. With our ability to holiday abroad very much in question for this summer, the UK holiday – or “staycation” as it’s known – is set to be huge.
Whether your staycation lasts a few weeks or just a couple of days is up to you, but you can be sure to see plenty of others following suit as soon as they can.
The national clamouring for sun, sand and sea has never been greater, and you can be sure that there are hundreds of thousands of Brits vying to jump on the first plane out of the country. When and how we’ll all be allowed to do that appears to be somewhat secondary to getting a booking in the diary at the moment. Travel companies have continued to take bookings over the past 12 months for holidays planned long into the future.
Holiday spending is set to be a bit more serious this year (and potentially beyond), with many holidaymakers looking to secure “bucket list” trips that they’ve planned over months of being stuck within their own four walls. If you are booking soon, expect prices to be sky high. Demand will certainly outstrip supply for virtually any popular getaway you can think of.
At the far end of the spending scale, many prospective house buyers have seen the lockdown period as the time to buy a property. That’s thanks to a variety of factors including our ability to better manage our finances over the period, the increased availability of 5% mortgages and extended stamp duty holiday periods.
Coming out of lockdown, you may find yourself in a much stronger financial position than when you went in. With house prices expected to drop and the helping hand factors mentioned above in support, now could be the time to take the plunge.
The mental shopping list of the nation this coming summer is set to have a huge array of items on it, from a £4 pint to a £250,000 house purchase. Regardless of how significant or insignificant your spending plans are coming out of lockdown, expect the UK to be splashing the cash like never before this summer.