Greetings Dear World
How’s the Christmas shopping going?
Are we big into it?
Do we avoid it?
Do we dread it?
Do we love it?
Do we hate it?
Are we shopping a year in advance?
Are we known as last minute people?
Do we start shopping with a budget?
Do we have a big fat list to get through?
Do we make our fantasy a reality with our credit cards?
Do we love the excitement of shopping at Christmas time?
Do the fairy lights add to the festive frenzy shopping?
Do we always leave it to the very last day?
Do we think we have not bought enough?
Does the Christmas music in the stores keep us hanging there longer and spending more?
Is Christmas shopping all about the kids?
Is Christmas shopping for us all about food?
Is Christmas shopping only about the food and how we can impress others?
Is Christmas shopping for us making sure everything is just Perfect as we are cooking on the day?
Is Christmas shopping for us a time to please others?
Is Christmas shopping all about buying for others?
Is Christmas shopping a calculated choice to ensure we get it right buying gifts?
Is Christmas shopping a false way of being nice when all year round we ignore these people?
Is Christmas shopping a real drag and drain?
Is Christmas shopping a few days off to indulge?
Is Christmas shopping all about getting it over and done in a day?
Is Christmas shopping always Boring but we cannot admit that?
Is Christmas shopping always stimulating for us as we love the buzz and all the distractions?
Is Christmas shopping about a certain image we have in our mind?
Is Christmas shopping living up to our expectations?
Is Christmas shopping something we plan ahead?
Is Christmas shopping a moment to appreciate those we appreciate?
Is Christmas shopping a last minute attempt to splash out and surprise the new hot lady in our life?
Is Christmas shopping a licence to go nuts and spend spend spend because we love it?
Next – check this out
Christmas – largest economic stimulus for many nations worldwide
Sales increase dramatically in almost all retail areas. (1)
Is this telling us something about one day in the calendar?
Is this a real way of living or does it give rise to ills we are not aware of?
What is it about us that uses Christmas to stimulate?
Do we need to be asking what and why are we subscribing to this?
Does this stimulus reward us like a drug and so we want more of it to get the same effect?
Black Friday is followed up by a long weekend extravaganza which culminates in the online focused “Cyber Monday.”
It has recalibrated and brought forward consumers’ pre-Christmas shopping plans. (2)
Christmas season starts on Thanksgiving weekend
Black Friday leading sales and traffic day of the whole season
Closely followed by Super Saturday before Christmas Eve.
This shopping continues to end of January
After Christmas and New Year’s Eve, retail sales peak again in January as gift cards and vouchers received are used. (3)
Who comes up with these names for days like Super Saturday?
How long before we have a name for the Sunday before Christmas?
Christmas Shopping Statistics
The largest part of the holiday budget is spent on gifts for the family
Other expenses include decorations | candy | greetings cards (4)
Biggest Christmas Spenders
Rank Country $ spend on Christmas presents per minute during December
1 USA 2,372,227
2 UK 569,682
3 Germany 359,250
4 France 341,419
5 Italy 262,694
6 Spain 197,221 (5)
£1 billion – shoppers to spend Christmas Day 2018
£895 million – Christmas Day spending 2017
Online shopping boom – Trading Standards warn shoppers desperate for bargains
25% adults will shop on websites on 25 December
Consumers shun family activities in favour of bargain hunting
11am spending will peak, then
5pm after afternoon movies
70% online spending will be mobile shopping on Christmas Day
“people don’t want to be stuck in a bedroom on a desktop computer”
Professor Joshua Bamfield – Director of the Centre for Retail Research (6)
Trading Standards has issued a warning to online shoppers after finding they are putting themselves at risk of falling victim to scams by failing to do basic checks before buying things.
28% fail look for padlock symbol to check if website secure
25% shoppers do not look for reviews from seller
22% fail to check the returns policy
20% fallen victim to a scam when online shopping
The National Trading Standards have warned shoppers, after the sales “madness” they could be left with –
poor quality | substandard goods | overpriced goods | nothing at all
“One dodgy purchase could mean that money you think is being saved, ends up being money lost when items bought don’t meet initial expectations – or materialise at all.”
Lord Toby Harris – Chairman of National Trading Standards (6)
£2,000 typical household spend each month
25% extra spend in December
Spending habits change dramatically in the run up to Christmas
More spending on – going out | eating food | drinking Alcohol | buying gifts
How much more do we spend at Christmas
16% more on food
39% more on alcohol
43% more on clothing
56% more on toiletries
68% more on computers
85% more on books
116% more on music and dvds
New events like Black Friday and Cyber Monday mean we spend a similar amount in November as we do in December.
One day a week events have moved to week-long events in an attempt to buy our gifts earlier. (7)
Christmas Spending 2018 – survey results
53% start Christmas shopping between October and November
45% buy Christmas presents for between 5 and 10 people
45% planning to spend more on family members than children
41% shoppers plan to spend £100 – £200 on food and decorations
65% plan to do most of their Christmas shopping online (8)
£300 online shoppers to spend at Christmas
Based on online sales figures from 2017, research commissioned by Royal Mail
54% clothes – most popular online purchases
42% CDs | DVDs | Computer games (9)
$3 billion Black Friday – online sales in 2016 (2)
26 million real Christmas trees purchased (1)
48% consumers plan to buy gift cards and certificates
Latest holiday consumer survey revealed in 2016 (3)
$1.1 trillion spending in holiday sales expected this year
$134 billion predicted in Online Sales this holiday season
$110 billion spending Online during this period in 2017 (10)
Estimated Christmas Spending – November 2018
$794 Christmas gifts this year
Latest results based on Galllup Telephone poll conducted 1 – 11 November
Nationally representative sample of 1,037 age 18 or older (11)
Types of gifts consumers plan to purchase similar to 2017
gift cards | clothing | toys
54% gift cards | gift certificates
46% games | toys | dolls
39% food | liquor
Where consumers shop for holiday gifts
60% Internet | Online Retailers
52% mass merchants
32% traditional department stores
28% off price stores
22% supermarkets | grocery stores
22% local independent stores
22% restaurants | fast food establishments
21% warehouse membership clubs
21% electronics | office supply | computer stores
20% home improvement stores
20% outlet stores | outlet centers
17% dollar stores
16% speciality clothing stores
15% toy stores (12)
“Singles Day” | 11 November | Online one day retail festival
$17.8 billion shoppers spent in 24 hours on one online platform
Singles Day has now become a day where everyone, not just single people buy themselves a gift. (2)
$11 billion spending on Christmas Gifts (13)
$25 billion spending this Christmas
$1,396 average spending for Generation X
$464 average spending on gifts
$1 billion spending on decorations
43% plan to donate this year
$76 Gen X spending most on charity donations
$131 average spend on Alcohol per person
$122 average spend on food per person
23% unwanted gift cards given this Christmas
50% will spend big on travel (14)
Christmas Tree Farms
Canada is a net exporter of fresh-cut Christmas trees
$77.6 million value of farm cash receipts for Christmas trees
1,872 farms grew Christmas trees
$43.1 million value of Christmas trees exported to rest of the world
1,952,489 fresh cut Christmas trees exported to the world
Artificial Christmas Tree Imports
$61 million total value of artificial Christmas trees imported
$59.5 million artificial Christmas trees imported from China
Gifts purchased at large retailers
$5.1 billion food | beverages
$459.9 million televisions | audio | video equipment
$417.8 million toys | games | hobby supplies | electronic games
$274.9 million computer hardware | computer software
$263.4 million small electrical appliances
$238.5 million tableware | kitchenware | cookware | bakeware
$171.6 million sporting goods
$154.8 million cosmetics | fragrances
$118 million jewellery | watches
$98.7 million stationery | office supplies | cards | gift wrap | party supplies
$73.7 million cameras | photographic equipment and supplies
21.8 million turkeys produced
Drink and Drug Driving
70,500 incidents of impaired driving reported by police
$1,622 average holiday shopping in-store
Children and partners are the people consumers spend the most (16)
Millennials (age 23 – 36)(17) most likely to exceed their budget
55% millennial consumers stating they over-spent
Department stores most popular location for holiday shopping (16)
$675 average spend on holiday shopping
Black Friday eclipsed Boxing Day as shoppers prefer the event –
“shop till you drop” (18)
46% holiday spending is on Travel
41% gifts (19)
40% plan to take advantage of Black Friday discounts
35% planning to go deal hunting on Boxing Day
30% planning for Cyber Monday shopping (18)
$65 pet owners average spend on their animals
Majority of consumers love the in-store shopping experience
66% consider in-store as primary holiday shopping
33% online shopping from desktops | mobiles | smart home tech
51% millennials think of online shopping first
61% use home delivery regularly (19)
Cost of Christmas
20% have set aside more than $500 for festive shopping
50% plan to shop for gifts 2-3 weeks before Christmas
Top gift recipients
49% close friends
43% significant others
Children – Toys & Games (66%) | Books & Stationery (34%) | Confectionary (25%)
Close Friends – Confectionary (39%) | Beauty & Grooming (32%) | Alcohol (22%)
Significant Other – Clothes Jewellery (44%) | Gadgets (21%) | Beauty & Grooming (20%) | Experiential Gifts (20%)
Colleagues/Bosses – Confectionary (59%) | Alcohol (30%) | Novelties (19%) (20)
76,800 hours to make Christmas decorations
15,120 man hours to get famous shopping street ready for Christmas
“Singaporeans are so exposed to the Singles day, Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales, which soak up a lot of shopping dollars globally.
Retailers here have to work really hard to build excitement around Christmas discounts and raise it up slowly until Chinese New Year.
Hence the November, December and January period is key for retailers to get as much excitement around shopping for customers.”
Prem Shamdasani – Associate Professor – Department of Marketing at NUS Business School (21)
53% look to chatbots for help with holiday shopping
74% actually acted on recommendations of the chatbots (21)
What is a Chatbot?
English Oxford Living Dictionary
A computer program designed to simulate conversation with human users, especially over the Internet. (22)
So here it is – a snapshot of what we spend at Christmas
What exactly is it telling us about our shopping behaviour?
Do these statistics tell us what we value in life?
What is it telling us about wanting a fresh tree and not bothered where it comes from?
Do some of us campaign about the environment but are happy to ignore the fact our big tree does affect our earth?
Are our spending habits throughout the year just a continuation at Christmas time?
How many of us don’t even know why we have Christmas or what it really means?
What if we just stop and ask ourselves, what is the feeling we are left with when the whole thing stops and ends?
(1) (n.d). U.S. Christmas Season – Statistics & Facts. Statista. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from
(2) Blackley, N. (2017, November 9). China’s Singles Day Retail Phenomenon Will Blow Black Friday Out the Water. Independent. Retrieved December 15, 2018 from
(3) (2018). Roughly How Much Money Do You Think You Personally Will Spend on Christmas Gifts This Year? Statista. Retrieved December 23, 2018 from
(4) Rogan, J. (2018, November 9). What People Spend on Christmas Around the World. Investopedia. Retrieved December 23, 2018 from
(5) (2018, November 28). Research Reveals How Much Money Gets Spent on Christmas Presents Every Minute Around the World. Business Matters. Retrieved December 23, 2018 from
(6) Morley, K. (2018, December 19). Shoppers Predicted to Spend £1bn on Christmas Day for the First Time. The Telegraph. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from
(7) (n.d). How Much Do We Spend at Christmas? Bank of England. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from
(8) (2018). Christmas Spending 2018 – Survey Results. bobatoo.co.uk. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from
(9) Jahshan, E. (2018, November 9). Online Shoppers to Spend Almost £300 at Christmas. Retail Gazette. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from
(10) Thomas, L. (2018, November 13). Retailers Could Ring Up More Than $1.1 Trillion in Holiday Sales, Topping Last Year. CNBC. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from
(11) Saad, L. (2018, November 15). Consumers’ Holiday Spending Estimate is Down, But Still Solid. GALLUP. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from
(12) Furman, B., Hogan, S., Sangadi, R. K. V., & Sides, R. (2018, October 23). 2018 Deloitte Holiday Retail Survey. Deloitte Insights. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from
(13) (December 4, 2017). Aussies Splurge $11B on Christmas Shopping. CommSec. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from
(14) (2018). Australia’s Christmas Spending 2018. Finder. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from
(15) (2018, May 5). Christmas…by the Numbers. Statistics Canada. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from
(16) (n.d). Holiday Season Shopping in Canada – Statistics & Facts. Statista. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from
(17) Shugerman, E. (2018, March 15). What is a Millennial and When is the Cut Off Date for Generation Y? Independent. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from
(18) Alini, E. (2018, November 19). How Much Canadians Across the Country Plan to Spend This Holiday Season. Global News. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from
(19) 2018 Canadian Holiday Outlook. PWC. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from
(20) (n.d). Christmas Shopping in Singapore: Some Surprising Facts. The Asian Parent Singapore. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from
(21) Cher, B. (2017, December 26). ‘Tis the Season of Cheer for Local Retailers. The Edge Singapore. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from
(22) (n.d). English Oxford Living Dictionaries. Retrieved December 22, 2018 from