CHESTER, England, October 14, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --
- 60 per cent of Brits worried about funding Christmas this year
- Up 15 per cent since 2009
- A third expect to have to make severe cutbacks on spending
Despite Christmas being a few months down the road, with UK households struggling against the rising cost of living and the resultant squeeze on their wallets, almost two thirds of consumers (60 per cent) are already worried about how they will fund the cost of the festivities.
A poll* conducted by MoneySupermarket.com, Britain's number one comparison site, asked consumers whether they were worried about being able to afford Christmas this year. A staggering 60 per cent of the 4,000 people polled admitted they were already worrying about the cost of the festive season, up seven per cent from 2010** and up a whopping 15 per cent from 2009***.
Alarmingly over half of those who had concerns about Christmas (55 per cent) were seriously concerned about how they would get through the holiday season and felt things would be a lot tighter this year than previous years.
Kevin Mountford, head of banking at MoneySupermarket commented: "For many families Christmas is always a financially tricky time. This year will be tougher than most as a result of the increases in the cost of living and widespread pay freezes. It's no surprise therefore to see that more people are worried about funding the festive period this year compared to previous years.
"The best bet when it comes to funding a busy period like Christmas is to take a 'jam jar' approach to saving and put a little aside each week in a regular savers account, such as the Norwich & Peterborough Family Regular Saver account which pays up to 5.00 per cent fixed for 12 months. In an ideal world, households would have started saving months ago; however with budgets being squeezed this is not always an option so consumers must look at other options.
"For those with insufficient savings, a credit card offering interest free purchases could offer some much needed flexibility. Zero per cent deals can be an efficient way to spread the cost of Christmas, with leading products such as the Tesco Clubcard Credit Card offering up to 15 months of interest free on purchases. However anyone going down this road must ensure they can afford to clear the balance quickly or may find themselves paying off their debt when Christmas 2012 rolls around. Alternatively using a cashback credit card such as the 123 Cashback Credit Card from Santander or the American Express Platinum Cashback card can help reward your spending over Christmas.
"Consumers will also be amazed at how much cash they can free up by simply ensuring they are using the most efficient financial products and not shelling out unnecessarily on interest payments. Vouchers are also a great way to save, whether its presents for the kids or that all important Christmas turkey, getting online and doing their homework can save consumers some serious cash.
"Ultimately, Christmas needn't be a financial headache. If you cannot afford to borrow to fund the festivities or don't have any savings, don't despair. Consider having a thrifty Christmas and make your own cards and presents - we are all feeling the pinch and doing Christmas on the cheap needn't prevent you enjoying the occasion."
Notes to editors:
Poll ran from 3 Oct to 10 Oct 2011
**Opinium Research carried out an online survey of 2,017 UK adults aged 18+ from 24th to 27th September 2010. Results have been weighted to nationally representative criteria.
***Opinium Research carried out an online poll on behalf of moneysupermarket.com of 2008 British adults from 29th September and 2nd October 2009. Results have been weighted to nationally representative criteria.
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