Welsh households spend most on Christmas in UK – but more will do shopping online this year

Christmas decorations

A new study has revealed that Welsh households will be the most generous this year when spending money on everything from Christmas gifts to food and decorations.

The UK-wide survey by McCarthy & Stone showed people in Wales would spend an average of £460 on Christmas – over £40 more than the UK average of £419.19.

Additionally, this is more than Scotland (£457.27), Northern Ireland (£400) and England’s biggest spenders in the north of the country (£445.59).

UK-wide consumer spending however is expected to drop this year due to the pandemic, with this year’s national average spend almost £150 less than 2018 and 2019 when it was £560 and £567 respectively.

The study also showed that the shopping habits of the people of Wales have also been affected by the pandemic. Almost 84% of Welsh respondents stated they will primarily do their Christmas shopping online this year, with over a quarter claiming this is due to safety concerns with the Coronavirus.

 

‘Not unexpected’

Unsurprisingly, the main reason given for the reduced expense this year is the COVID-19 pandemic – with nearly half (47.7%) of respondents all over the country citing the financial issues caused by the Coronavirus as a key factor.

Wider research for the study showed that uncertainty in the job markets, being on the furlough scheme and prioritising savings in these uncertain times are some of the specific pandemic-related reasons people had for their reduced Christmas expenditure.

“While it’s a real positive to see that the people of Wales will be pushing the boat out and rewarding themselves with some well-deserved Christmas treats this year, with everything that’s gone on in 2020, it’s still not surprising that our overall Christmas spending is set to drop – nor is it necessarily unexpected, particularly when more of us are focussed on saving for 2021,” a spokesperson for McCarthy & Stone said.

“However, while this may mean our Christmases might not be as decadent as last year, it offers opportunities for us to find festive joy in other ways. For instance, many of our survey respondents said that they want to spend more time with their family and friends, or get involved in more charity or voluntary work to help others, rather than spending money.”

 

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