It may only be September, but stores across the UK are already preparing themselves for a lucrative holiday season. In December 2012, it was estimated that shoppers spent £4.5 billion(1) in last minute shopping sprees. With the current economic climate, it is hardly surprising that this year consumers are looking for ways to save on their festive shopping.
Christmas cost breakdown
The cost of Christmas has been increasing gradually from year to year. It is expected that this year the total cost of Christmas will rise by around 10%(2). In 2011, the average cost of a family turkey was £51.40, but that rose to £552 in 2012.
Electronic gifts are another thing that has risen in price in the past couple of years. If you were to buy a Kindle in 2011, it would cost £89, where in 2012 the latest Kindle Fire cost £1292. This is a huge increase and it highlights how as technology advances, the more expensive electronic gadgets become.
Why early preparation is important
It may seem ridiculous that consumers are already starting to think about Christmas when summer hasn’t even passed yet. What many people don’t realise is that by starting early, they could save quite a lot of money on their Christmas shopping. The key is to spread out everything you need. Buy little things here and there so that you don’t have to pay in bulk.
Retail stores are clever when it comes to encouraging consumers to spend more at the last minute. Sales are often added in the days leading up to Christmas, giving the consumer the impression they are saving money, when in fact they are potentially spending more.
Using vouchers to save money
Online vouchers have quickly become one of the most popular ways to save money at Christmas. More than 67% of adults have used a voucher code to cut the price of their shopping and it's expected that holiday season shopping won't be any different.
Julian House, founder of My Favourite Voucher Codes said, “Voucher codes give consumers the opportunity to treat their family and friends with great gifts at Christmas, without blowing their budget.”
It's not just the cost of shopping that's on consumers' minds, the time it takes is also causing a problem. However, savvy shoppers are able to download a voucher code app to alert them of any discounts – meaning they can save both time and money during the festive season.