As hockey fans eagerly await the start of the Stanley Cup playoffs, businesses in the four Canadian cities with teams that qualified for the postseason are preparing for a big sales boost, according to Moneris.

The payment services firm examined sales data from the last three NHL postseasons and found that playoff games in Canadian cities provide a significant boon for local economies.

Businesses near a team’s arena consistently see the biggest uptick in sales, Moneris said.

During the second round of the 2022 NHL playoffs, the Edmonton Oilers battled their inter-provincial rival Calgary Flames. During Game 3 of that series, Edmonton restaurants near Rogers Place saw a 233 per cent increase in spending, Moneris said.

Meanwhile, spend volume increased by 183 per cent around Montreal’s Bell Centre in the lead-up to Game 4 of the 2021 Stanley Cup Finals between the hometown Canadiens and the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Moneris said playoff games also impact local bars and restaurants across cities and beyond. After the Canadiens won Game 4 in overtime, fans went out to celebrate in big numbers all across the province.

Moneris said it led to spend increases at around 11:30 p.m. of 160 per cent near the Bell Centre, 245 per cent across Montreal, and 137 per cent across Quebec, even though the game was played on a Monday.

During Game 3 of the Oilers-Flames series in 2022, the city of Edmonton saw a 71 per cent spend increase compared to non-game days, Moneris said.

And even when Canadian teams play on the road, businesses can expect to see increased sales during the playoffs.

During Game 4 of last season’s second-round playoff series between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Florida Panthers, Toronto restaurants near Scotiabank Arena saw a 120 per cent sales increase, while restaurants city-wide saw an increase of 113 per cent.

Like last year, the Maple Leafs, Oilers and Winnipeg Jets qualified for the playoffs this season, but they’ll also be joined by the Vancouver Canucks, who are making their first postseason appearance since 2020.

The 2024 Stanley Cup playoffs begin on Saturday, April 20.


Figures are based on a comparison between game days and non-game days. Moneris spending reports measure spending in Canada across a range of categories by analyzing credit and debit card transaction data. The figures cited are derived from aggregated transaction data being processed by Moneris in the applicable categories.