According to spending data from the Commonwealth Bank, Australians definitely stop what they’re doing and take notice of the Melbourne Cup race.
The Victorian government said 2017’s race added a record $444.5 million into the state’s economy — up 4.1% from 2016.
Plenty of tourists also come to see the show, with more than 82,000 visitors heading to Melbourne. It’s big money for hotels, taxis, and clothiers, with racegoers reportedly spending nearly $57 million on retail and fashion items, including 50,664 pairs of shoes, 48,585 dresses, 15,474 suits and 55,739 hats and fascinators.
Punters also spent another $27.1 million on meals, food and beverages, and $44.8 million on wagering, suggesting racegoers are less interested in eating as they are at trying to win big.
All in all, Melbourne Cup’s economic impact can be felt in national spending, which is 12% on average higher than the Tuesday before.