British ‘share’ their TR buying habits

By Doug Newhouse |

London Gatwick Airport says newly commissioned research shows that 52% of British holidaymakers say that they actively save shopping for the airport.


At the same time, most UK retail consumers also admit they will use any excuse to justify shopping for ‘bargains’.


Top of the list of ‘self-indulgent justification’ is the admission by almost half of shoppers asked (48%) that they use sales and bargains as an excuse to spend, while £82.80 (€104.59/$141.47) is said to be the red mist trigger or ‘tipping point’ to fire shoppers into action.



Amusingly, the survey also claims to have found that almost a quarter (23%) of those asked admitted that they regularly hide their purchases – with the bedroom chosen as the most popular hiding place. Other hideaways mentioned included the bottom of the wardrobe (10%); under the bed (5%); and even stored in the waste bin wrapped in packaging to avoid detection (2%).


Almost a third (32%) of all those asked said they alternatively seek out retail therapy because shopping simply makes them happy.



The study sample comprised 2,000 people and was commissioned to support the launch of Gatwick’s new Summer Retail Campaign, ‘Tempted before Take-off’. Within this data it also obtained the top ten most common excuses women UK shoppers use to justify their spending habits:


1. It was on sale/discounted (48%);

2. It was a bargain (48%);

3. It was a treat to cheer myself up (30%);

4. I’ve saved up for it (29%);

5. I’ve wanted to buy it for ages (29%);

6. I needed to update my wardrobe / technology (25%);

7. I haven’t bought anything for ages (25%);

8. It’s an ‘essential’ (19%);

9. I bought it as a gift as I knew they’d love it (16%);

10. It’s an investment (13%).


Gatwick Airport also adds that it is not just the ladies that have the excuses up their sleeves, since 68% of men also admit to a few of their own.


Commenting on the findings, Spencer Sheen, Head of Retail at Gatwick Airport said: “Being tempted to shop is clearly something people feel the need to justify, but if the purchase and price is right, we shouldn’t have to make excuses. That’s why, with up to 20% off high street prices on almost everything at the airport, it’s not surprising so many plan to spend before they take off.


“At Gatwick we’ve invested millions in improving the shopping and eating experience to ensure every passenger can quickly and easily find what they need and want, at the best possible price.



Spencer Sheen, Head of Retail at Gatwick Airport.




“People can delight in finding luxury designer bargains alongside High Street favourites all under one roof which is complimented by our ‘Shop, Fly, Collect’ service, so passengers can make the most of the bargains available without lugging extra bags on holiday.


“We also have lots of tempting, award-winning restaurants to hand, giving passengers the chance to recharge their batteries before catching their flight.”


As for deals before take off, the survey found that more than half (52%) said they save up money to spend at the airport, with almost a fifth pre-planning their perfume spending; more than one in ten clothing and accessories; and 29% planning a meal or pre-flight drinks with friends.


Methodology: The research was conducted by ICM and commissioned by Gatwick Airport with fieldwork conducted in June 2014. Data was secured via an online survey, and the UK sample consisted of 2,000 UK consumers, aged 18 and above.


TOP IMAGE: Models trying too hard to look like real people at Gatwick Airport.

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