Australians are cutting back this Christmas

By AdNews | 17 October 2023
Credit: Annie Spratt via Unsplash

Australians are cutting back this Christmas.

Another tight Christmas is on the books as rising prices continue to eat into Australians’ Christmas budget and fuel financial pressure concerns, according to research by global data and insights company Pureprofile.

The 2023 Christmas Report is a global report based on the insights of 4,500 panel members from Australia, New Zealand, the UK, the USA and Singapore.

It found that the majority of Australians (65%) were curtailing their festive season celebrations, with 42% expecting to buy fewer gifts and 60% avoiding travel to cut down on discretionary spending. Despite having to work within tighter budgets this year, over half (54%) of Australians are still feeling positive about the holidays.

This is in line with most countries, with 65% of those in New Zealand, 57% of those in the UK, and a significant 73% of Singaporeans reporting that they expect cost of living concerns to hold back their Christmas spending this year. The outlier is America, with 53% stating that the increased cost of living will not impact their spending.

Food will be a focus this festive season as 43% of Australians choose to spend less on food and drinks; this is up from 37% in 2022 and 28% in 2021.

While the average food and drink budget ($306) is level with the previous two years ($310 in 2021 and $302 in 2022), 1 in 4 are also looking to find cheaper alternatives as Australians continue to battle rising grocery prices. In fact, 20% reported that their ultimate holiday wish would be the gift of cheaper groceries this year.

After a surge of enthusiasm for early Christmas shopping in 2022, only 67% will shop for presents in November or earlier. This is down from 72% in 2022 and 69% in 2021. Globally, most people intend to shop between November and early December, but a significant proportion of Americans plan to leave their shopping until the week before Christmas.

"This marks our fourth consecutive Christmas season characterised by tighter budgets and reduced spending," says Pureprofile’s CEO, Martin Filz.

"While this is not surprising, it is interesting to note where Australians are making the most cuts - discretionary spending on travel and gifts are often the first to be reduced in challenging times.

"However, we’re also now looking to the likes of essentials like food and drink to recoup some celebration costs. We’re seeing a thriftier Australia that’s placing an emphasis on thoughtful and intentional spending; where the holiday spirit is retained, but celebrations take on a simpler, more meaningful tone."



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