Getty family in car

This weekend, Easter marks the start of Bank Holiday season 2023. And what a season it is with an extra Bank Holiday for the King’s Coronation on May 8. Before that there is Early May Bank Holiday on May 1 and after it, there is Spring Bank Holiday on May 29. This is all followed by the Summer Bank Holiday on August 28 then, of course, Christmas.

In total there are nine Bank Holidays in England and Wales, 10 in Scotland and 11 in Northern Ireland. The Scots don’t get Easter Monday off but got a Bank Holiday on January 2 and also have one on November 30 for St Andrew’s Day. In Northern Ireland, the two extra days off are for St Patrick’s Day on March 17 and the Battle of the Boyne on July 14.

I don’t know about you but it sounds like an HR person’s nightmare! But the upside to all these Bank Holidays is that they tend to bring people out of the house and onto the roads.

Easter is often seen as the gateway to spring and summer, with people taking the opportunity to celebrate some extra time off work with family and friends – whether that’s a traditional roast lamb dinner on Easter Sunday or a barbecue, often even if it is raining.

Research always tells us that people plan ahead and, for Easter, for example, plan their buying four weeks in advance. Some might do but there are many others that don’t and more still who might buy Easter eggs in advance but eat them before the event happens (guilty as charged!).

According to a new shopping habit survey by Ferrero/KAM, 45% of people rely on local and independent retailers for last minute buys at Easter. I can see why when I think of the supermarkets. For weeks on end they are piled high with Easter eggs – everywhere you look they are there but come Good Friday and they all have vanished. I know this is what is meant to happen but the speed in which they disappear always amazes me. Shopping for an Easter egg in a Sainsbury’s on the Saturday of Easter weekend is a hopeless task and so people will turn to a smaller outlet for help. And with the standards of so many forecourt stores today so high, I am certain they won’t be disappointed.