Gatwick research shows Christmas prudence

By Doug Newhouse |

Tougher times will see 30% spend less on Christmas gifts in 2012, while 16% will only buy for kids, according to research conducted for Gatwick Airport (above).



In research carried out for the airport by OnePoll (sample size 2,000/survey completed October 2012) the findings show that 49% have already begun buying Christmas presents with bulk buying proving popular – i.e. 33% of British people asked admitted buying the same present for more than one person.


Almost one quarter of those asked (23%) started their festive shopping in the first half of the year, with some (11%) engaging as early as January. More than half of all respondents (54%) also admitted that they are looking for ways to tackle what they see as a tough financial Christmas in as practical fashion as possible.


AVERAGE SPEND: £386/$613

Overall, a third (30%) of people said they are planning to spend less than in previous years, with the average estimated spend per person on presents totalling £386 ($613).


As mentioned, a third (33%) of those Brits asked said they plan to give the same gift to several people – of which chocolates (46%), wine (37%), biscuits (23%) and perfume/aftershave (22%) topped the list of answers. From the research, a total of 16% said they are adopting a ‘kids only’ present policy this year, while a third (31%) admit to sticking to a maximum spend rule.


A further 36% believe these kinds of limits are sensible, preventing spend for the sake of it and 30% believe they are imperative to prevent the cost of Christmas from spiralling out of control.


Almost two thirds (64%) of those asked admitted that they find the seasonal shopping experience stressful, while 60% actively seek to avoid the High Street during the pre-Christmas period. Women in particular said they find Christmas shopping stressful (72% versus 57% of men) and this is why many begin purchasing their gifts much earlier than others (70% versus 52%).


Spencer Sheen, Head of Retail at Gatwick Airport said: “It’s good to see that people are taking a more planned approach to Christmas as clever buying can definitely help reduce the overall cost. Those flying pre-Christmas should consider stocking up on smaller gifts like chocolates, wine and perfume at the airport so they can benefit from tax-free savings. Likewise on luxury items there are plenty of exclusive offers and discounts to be had at Gatwick.


“Plus, contrary to popular opinion, those buying in bulk don’t have to worry about exceeding their luggage limit so long as they don’t need their treats on their travels; Gatwick’s ‘Shop and Drop’ service allows people to buy as much as they like and we simply store the bags until they pick them up on their return.”


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