Consumer spending for the Spring Racing Carnival to reach $1.6 billion

With the race that stops the nation just five days away, new research shows that consumer spending on the Spring Racing Carnival will reach $1.6 billion this year, as people invest in new fashion, accessories and attend events trackside and in hospitality venues.

The research from the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) in collaboration with Roy Morgan shows that over 1.5 million people plan to attend a Spring Racing Carnival event trackside this year, with over 1.9 million Australians to attend events not on the track, such as in restaurants or other hospitality venues.

The joint research found:

  • Almost one in 10 Australians plan to attend a Spring Racing Carnival event on the track, representing over 1.5 million people
  • People celebrating the Spring Racing Carnival will spend an average of $1,076 on themselves, totalling $1.6 billion
  • Just over half (52%) of people say they’re spending the same or more than they did last year on their Spring Racing Carnival celebrations
  • A new dress or suit is the most common consumer purchase (mentioned by 68% of people planning to attend a Spring Racing Carnival event), followed by a hat/fascinator (35%), a pair of shoes (31%) and jewellery (26%).

ARA CEO Paul Zahra said the Spring Racing Carnival and Melbourne Cup in particular are highly anticipated events for fashion retailers and hospitality businesses as people dress up for events on and off the track.

“With Covid dampening Spring Racing Carnival celebrations the past two years, Australians are returning to the track in huge numbers and hospitality businesses are also set for a roaring trade on Tuesday with most venues hosting Melbourne Cup themed events,” Mr Zahra said.

“Our forecasts show consumer spending associated with the Spring Racing Carnival will reach $1.6 billion this year as consumers purchase new suits, dresses, and accessories. This is a highly anticipated event for fashion and accessory stores who’ve spent the past several weeks tailoring offers to horse racing lovers.

“While Australians are being challenged by the rising cost of living, consumer spending is set to remain strong over the festive season with our Roy Morgan forecasts showing nearly $64 billion will be spent in final six weeks before Christmas – a 3% increase on last year.”

**The ARA-Roy Morgan Snap SMS survey was conducted with an Australian-wide cross-section of 1,694 Australians aged 18+ on Friday September 30 – Tuesday October 4, 2022**


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About us: The Australian Retailers Association (ARA) is the oldest, largest and most diverse national retail body, representing a $400 billion sector that employs 1.3 million Australians and is the largest private sector employer in the country. As Australia’s peak retail body, representing more than 120,000 retail shop fronts and online stores, the ARA informs, advocates, educates, protects and unifies our independent, national and international retail community. To learn more about ARA’s exclusive member benefits and more, visit



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