More than half (54%) of all British adults have confessed to putting the money they receive at Christmas straight in their wallet which inevitably means it is spent on groceries, bills and other essential living expenses.
A survey of 1,995 UK adults, carried out by One4all, the Post Office gift card, revealed that as a nation, we are gifted an average of £300 at Christmas - but Brits will spend £242 on average on living costs and essentials, such as groceries and bills.
The top purchase made by 26% of Brits with their Christmas money was purchasing food. Almost a quarter (23%) of the nation also confessed to using it to pay bills, while 1 in 10 even admitted to using the money they had received to buy Christmas presents for other people.
26% called on the Christmas cash they had received to pay for unexpected costs that had arisen.
Aoife Davey, group marketing manager at One4all Gift Cards, said: “It’s clear that for over half of the nation, it is too tempting to end up putting the money we receive at Christmas straight into our wallets. It’s then all too easy to use this when doing a supermarket shop or for handing over when making daily essential payments and purchases.”
The research shows that 1 in 10 spend their gifted cash on essentials such as these, even when the giver had instructed them to use it to buy a treat for themselves.
Comparatively, almost half of British adults said they don’t spend the gift cards they receive in this way - opting to instead use them to buy treats for themselves - and 1 in 4 (23%) respondents said they are more likely to use gift cards to buy things they actually want, instead of using them to pay for living expenses and boring essentials.
“To avoid this happening, Britons should aim for a compromise. Gift cards are a great way of gently forcing recipients to properly treat themselves and buy something that they will really be able to enjoy. But you don’t have to completely restrict choice - multi-store gift cards mean the recipient can choose from thousands of places to use them.”