Brits plan to spend £526 celebrating Christmas
29 Oct 2012
Brits plan to spend an average of £526 celebrating Christmas this year - with almost half of people planning to put current economic conditions to one side and spend the same amount on presents for their family as last year.
The HSBC Christmas Spending Survey found that across the UK people will spend on average £347 on gifts for their immediate family, and an additional £179 on food, drink and entertainment this festive season. The comparative figures in the 2011 survey were £378 and £183.
The survey also revealed that:
- The biggest spenders by age group will be the 35-44 year-olds (£633) - many people in this group will be buying gifts for their young children.
- 20% of people say they will spend more this year compared to last year. This applies to more people aged 18-24 (29%), suggesting that disposable income may be on the rise among young people.
- In contrast, 17% will spend less this year compared to 2011 - especially women (20%) and people living in south east England (22%).
- The Welsh will be the biggest spenders by UK region with a total of £656 - £484 on gifts and £172 on food, drink and entertainment. The comparative figures in Scotland are £343 and £172.
Among people who plan to spend money on presents for their immediate family, 71% will try and save cash by one means or another to get the best value for their money.
Almost a third of people (31%) will use discount vouchers, whereas 29% will be cashing in their retailer reward points. Others will be more selective when it comes to giving presents, with 12% saying they will drop some people off their present list this year to make savings.
1 in 10 people (9%) will give homemade presents, whereas others will resort to recycling presents given to them in previous years (7%), with another 5% even giving second-hand items as presents.
Women will do more to save money this year when it comes to giving Christmas presents to immediate family members, whereas 25% of men will not even try to make any savings.
High Street v Online spending
The survey found that British consumers will turn as much to the internet as they will to the high street when it comes to Christmas shopping for presents this year. However, 16% of people will only use online sources for presents and 13% will only use offline outlets.
Online auction sites are especially popular with younger people aged 25-54, compared to those aged 55+.
Compared to men, women find particular appeal in high-street shops (65%), but also local markets (28%), Christmas fetes (21%), charity shops (13%), boutique shops (9%) and car boot sales (7%).
The survey revealed that 65% of people will fund their Christmas present shopping from their salary or other income and 38% will use all or some of their savings.
However, collectively, 17% of people will borrow from one source or another to pay for the presents they buy.
Credit and store cards will be especially popular with men (15%), but overall, the use of such credit is down to 13% from 16% in 2011.
Using an overdraft facility, on the other hand, is more common with women (6%), compared to men (3%), as well as with 18-24 year olds (12%).
When to hit the shops
Retailers will be pleased to hear that just 8% of British people say they have already done the majority of their Christmas shopping, either in last year's January sales (1%) or throughout the year up to and including September (7%).
Early December (1st to 11th) promises to be busy as usual with 27% of people doing most of their present shopping then. Just 2% will put it off until the week before Christmas (19th to 22nd).
George Charalambous, HSBC Head of Current Accounts, said: 'Our research shows that once again households want to put financial difficulties to one side and celebrate this special time of the year.
'Almost two thirds of people will fund their present shopping from their salary or other income. To help our customers keep on top of their finances, we offer a free text message alert facility that warns them when they are nearing their overdraft limit.
'Customers can also download the free HSBC Fast Balance app, which can be used to obtain details of your current account balance and last six transactions. In addition, by using our text banking service you can get your account balance sent by text message.
'We are also the only bank to give our customers an alert when withdrawing cash from HSBC ATMs if the amount they are requesting will take them over their overdraft limit.'
A full copy of the HSBC Christmas Spending Survey is attached.
For further information please contact the HSBC press office:
020 7992 1574