christmas spending habits
October 19, 2016

An Interesting Look At Our Christmas Spending Habits

Yep, sorry, we said it! Christmas is on the way, there’s no denying it.

The sofa adverts have been banging on about it since sometime mid-August, the supermarkets are stacking the shelves with Terry’s chocolate oranges and the extremely over excited among you might even have watched a festive film already – our vote is for The Grinch.

The Christmas holidays have a huge impact on our lives, in lots of areas – but none more so than with our spending. We hit the shops in our millions every December to bag the perfect gifts for our loved ones, and retailers of all kinds become rushed off their feet.

But what exactly do our Christmas spending habits look like? We thought it would be particularly interesting for all of our retailer customers to find out…

We found a survey by insurance company Bobatoo, where they asked 1,000 people about what their Christmas spending habits, what they spend, how and when they spend it, and here’s some of the top results they found.

When do people start their Christmas shopping?

We all say it; we’re going to start early this year! Get all our Christmas shopping done and dusted before the December rush starts! But how many of us actually go through with it?

According to the Bobatoo survey, the majority of us don’t actually do too bad, with 38% starting between October and November, and 29% starting between August and September – 9% even started their Christmas shopping in July or earlier!

However, there are a whole 24% that leave starting their shopping until December – all that last minute rushing around could result in impulse buying and potentially overspending, especially if we’re unable to secure the gifts we’d hoped.

Are you a last minute Christmas shopper?

How much do people spend?

This can obviously be vastly different depending on what we earn, how much disposable income we have to use at Christmas, and how many people we actually have to buy for, but the Bobatoo survey showed that on average, most of us spend between £500 and £700 on presents alone.

But the festive season isn’t just about buying gifts – we also end up spending more pennies on things like food, drink, socialising (it’s all the office Christmas party’s fault) and decorations. You may be shocked to find that of the people surveyed, most of them spent an additional £200 to £300 on Christmas excluding presents – this is adding up fast!

That may be how much we actually spend, but how much do we budget to spend? And do we manage to stay within that budget? The survey found that almost half of people asked do go over their budget, but not by a lot. 29% overspend by a huge amount, which is a wee bit concerning, but 18% do well and stay within budget.

What might be even more worrying is that 7% of people don’t set a budget at all!

Where does our spending go?

It won’t come as a surprise that 68% of people spend the majority of their Christmas shopping budget on their children. The next biggest portion of the spend goes on our partners, and only 1% is spent on friends. It seems that we really do see Christmas as a time for family, focusing on buying for those closest to us.

When we look at what we spend on our partners specifically, the majority of us shell out between £100 and £200, and when it comes to which age groups gets the biggest Christmas haul, it’s those between 5 and 16.

Where do we do our Christmas shopping? 

And, to finish, one of the most interesting findings from the survey was where we actually carry out our Christmas shopping. We know online shopping is on the rise hugely, and it’s hard to ignore the increased ease that comes with ticking off your Christmas list whilst sat on your sofa – but surely the joy of exploring the Christmas displays in store, wrapping up warm and late night shopping is still number one?

Well, it is, but only just – the survey showed that 55% of people do the majority of their Christmas shopping in store, with 45% doing the majority online. So, going into a physical store still remains victorious for the moment, but it’s certainly getting more and more even.

Do these survey findings reflect your Christmas shopping habits? 

See the full results on the original article here, and happy spending!