The pressure to buy the best presents results in family tensions and overspending across the UK.
- Last year parents collectively spent an estimated £4.8 billion on presents for their kids
- Grandparents spent an average of £254.53 on presents, equivalent to £3.4 billion
- A quarter (25%) of those with close child relatives feel pressured to buy gifts they can’t afford, and 15% have been in trouble for not buying the right gift
- Since its launch, Asda Money’s Christmas Savings Card has paid out a total of over £12 million to its savvy savers to help with the cost of Christmas
Everyone knows that being a parent is rather expensive, particularly when it comes to birthdays and Christmas. However it seems that no one is exempt; whether a god-parent, aunt or uncle, present-buying for kids is likely to throw up some issues, both financial and emotional.
New research from Asda Money reveals that parents spent an average of £294.65 last year buying presents for their children (£4.8 billion in total), while grandparents spent an average of £254.53 (£3.4 billion).
|Relationship||Amount spent||Number of children||Spend-per child|
Furthermore, the research shows that a quarter (25%) of those buying gifts say they feel pressure to buy presents that stretch their budget or that they can’t afford for children they are related to.
- 38% actually said they felt pressure from themselves as they wanted to better last year’s gifts.
- 26% said the pressure came from the children who want what their friends have or what they’ve seen on TV
- 21% said the pressure came from the child’s parents who tell them what to buy.
- 11% feel pressure to keep up with Joneses, trying to compete with parents of other children.
This pressure inevitably results in overspending, with just under a quarter (24%) of those who bought presents for their child relatives last year saying they went over budget, at an average of £29.19 for every child.
This totals an estimated £251 million3 in overspend. Results showed that men (29%) were more likely to overspend than women (23%), while 18-34-year-olds (41%) are the most likely to overspend compared to those aged 55+ (13%). Not only this but one in six (15%) Brits with a child relative have experienced tension with their family or friends as a result of not buying the right gift for the child. This is particularly true in London, with a third (33%) of Londoners saying they have got into trouble for giving the wrong present.
Finally, in light of this pressure, a third (33%) of those who have to buy presents for children with whom they are related, said if it continues, they don’t think they will be able to afford such presents in the future, rising to two fifths (40%) of women.
Lucy Robinson, Asda Money says: “It is clear from our research that all family members are feeling the pressure when it comes to purchasing presents, not just from the children but from themselves and from other parents at the school gates. This pressure is probably all the more intense thanks to a poor savings environment and the highest rate of inflation in two years.
“Birthdays and Christmas are supposed to be an opportunity for families to get together and have fun. Instead, as our research shows, the pressure to buy the right gift can get in the way. With this in mind, we want to make things easier for families, whether you’re a parent, aunt or uncle or a godparent. With our Christmas Savings card, we aim to help people spread the cost of Christmas as we know it can quickly escalate, especially if you have a long gift list. By saving little and often onto the Christmas Savings Card, Asda customers can watch their savings pot grow throughout the year so that Christmas is one less budget burden.”
With the Christmas Savings Card customers can save up to £144, for which Asda will pay a tiered bonus if the money remains on the card until the bonus day.
Over the last twelve years, Asda has awarded over £12 million in bonuses, consistently helping its customers spread the cost of Christmas. It is possible to save money on more than one card and they are available all year round for customers to start saving as early as they choose. Asda customers can earn the following potential bonus on balances loaded:
- Save £144 – bonus is £6
- Save £97 – bonus is £3
- Save £49 – bonus is £1
With the ever-popular card, customers can receive up to 5.21% AER gross*, still a much better return than traditional savings accounts. If you do not want to apply for the card and prefer to try more traditional methods of saving money long term why not to try: The Time Key?
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