The pandemic has boosted the importance of bargain hunting with most Australians seeking to reduce expenditure where possible, according to new research by PayPal deal-finding shopping tool, Honey.

More than 8 in 10 (85%) of Australians say they feel positive when they secure a great deal online, with 82% spending up to an hour a week searching online for bargains, and almost one-quarter (23%) spend between two and five hours a week on the hunt.

However, some demographics are more likely than others to do so, with those aged 35 to 49 topping the list, spending 30% more time than the national average finding deals, totalling around 85 minutes per week.

Parents spend around 77 minutes hunting online, which is more than childless households at 60 minutes and empty nesters at 43 minutes. Honey searches the internet for available discount codes and applies it to consumer’s shopping cart in just seconds.

Since the start of the pandemic, 71% of Aussies said they shop with retailers they know will offer discounts. But this hasn’t stopped those shopping with purpose, with 61% saying they have been stepping up to support local businesses.

Two-thirds of Australians (66%) say they are making fewer impulse purchases and 63% care more about finding a bargain during the Covid-19 era. Women were more likely to care (66%) about securing a bargain than men (59%). Covid has also impacted our attitude to non-essential items and treats with over half (57%) saying they will only buy these non-essentials when there is a sale, discount, or coupon available.

However, only one-third of Australians (33%) look to find a discount on what they need every time they shop online. Interestingly, 31% said they find online sales confusing or overwhelming and 42% said they would rather choose the easiest path to purchase rather than going out of their way for a deal.