CANBERRA, AAP – Retailers can expect a $7.1 billion boost over the Easter long weekend as many Australians get away for the first time in two years.

Research by the Australian Retailers Association and pollster Roy Morgan estimate $1.5 billion will be spent on food alone, including seafood, hot-cross buns and Easter eggs.

About one in 10 of the 2184 Australians surveyed said they would be spending more on food this year, while two-thirds said they would be spending the same.

Easter Saturday is one of the top 10 trading days of the year.

“For many, this is the first true holiday since the pandemic began,” association CEO Paul Zahra said, noting the long queues at domestic airports.

“Even Christmas last year was disrupted by the surge in Omicron cases and testing requirements to cross borders, which forced many people to cancel their plans at the last minute.”

But with minimal COVID-19 restrictions now in place, it is set to deliver a significant boost for retailers in popular holiday destinations who have struggled with the absence of visitors in recent years.

Almost two-thirds of Australians going away at Easter will travel within their own state, just over a third will go interstate, while just three per cent are going overseas.

“Beyond spending on travel and food, DIYs around the house will also be popular for green thumbs around the country,” Mr Zahra said.

“It’s the last break many people will have before winter sets in, and people who aren’t going away traditionally use this time to upgrade things around the home that they’ve been putting off for months due to their busy schedules.”