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Average UK household Christmas spend set to drop by over £100

christmas balls before a twinkle background
Some 12% of Brits said they plan to spend 'significantly less' than last year. Photo: Getty

The average UK household will be spending over £100 less this Christmas than in 2019 and 2018, a new study has found.

The national average spend figure for 2020 is £419.19, according to the research by McCarthy & Stone. This is almost £150 less than 2018 and 2019 where the average spends were £560 and £567 respectively.

Nearly half (48%) of respondents said that financial issues caused by the Coronavirus were a key factor in reduced spending this Christmas, in the survey of over 1,000. Uncertainties in the job market, the end of the furlough scheme, and worries about when the pandemic will end cited as reasons why Brits are spending less.


Some 12% of Brits said they plan to spend “significantly less” than last year, while 28% of respondents plan to spend “less” than in 2019. Only 4% of intend to spend more on Christmas this year, while 10% are unsure if their spending habits will change.

Wales is set to be the biggest spending part of the UK this year with a household spend of £460.

Households in Scotland and northern England will spend more than average at £457 and £445 respectively.

READ MORE: COVID-Christmas set to drive premium spirit sales

Those in the South West are expected to spend the least at £374.05 — £45 lower than the average.

Liverpool is the city with the biggest festive spend in 2020, with an average spend of £545.28.

People in Sheffield plan to be the most frugal this festive season, spending £366.13 per household.

Almost half (46%) of respondents plan to do most of their Christmas shopping online this year — with a further 28% saying they were choosing to shop only online because of the pandemic.

Only one in five Brits said they will do most of their shopping on the high street this year.

Over half (52%) of people in the UK are worried about how they will afford Christmas this year, according to a separate survey by consumer insight company Toluna.

Some 40% of respondents said that they are prioritising saving for 2021 due to fears about the future, while 43% said they were concerned about their current financial situation and over a third (40%) said they didn’t have any festive savings.

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