Families tighten Christmas purse strings as festive finances bite.

  • A third of Brits will tackle Christmas with a reduced budget this year
  • Morrisons announces Christmas lunch groceries for £2.49 per head

Research today reveals that the average budget this Christmas will be £478.50. But Brits are actively cutting the cost of Christmas by an average of £28-per-household compared to last year’s spending.

The research, released today by Morrisons, found that families are making sacrifices this year in order to cope with the additional outlay of spend over the festive break. Over a third of families will be consciously cutting back on presents (36 per cent), 19 per cent will be leaving empty stockings for their partners and a fifth of families will cutting back on the obligatory Christmas treats such as chocolate boxes and biscuits, in a bid to cut their festive outgoings.

The average British household will fork out £48.30 on the Christmas Day spread as well as another £47 on drinks during the Christmas period. Weighing in at £12.38 per head for food compared to £3.60 on a normal weeknight dinner, bellies may be full but pockets empty around the festive lunch table.

Dalton Philips, Morrisons Chief Executive, commented: “We’re all only too aware that these tough economic times are causing customers to cut back their spending plans. We recognise that Christmas lunch can be one of the most anticipated and special moments of the festive season and we believe it is everybody’s right to enjoy a special Christmas, whatever the budget. This is why we’ve worked especially hard this year to create a range of products at prices which allow you to create a traditional Christmas Day dinner for as little as £2.49 per head[1].”

In a bid to control their budgets, Brits are also planning a savvy approach to their shopping this year to ensure Christmas isn’t compromised due to cost and also to retain control of their spending. Forty-four per cent will use promotions, deals and vouchers, 32 per cent will religiously stick to a prepared shopping list to keep them on course and almost half (47 per cent) will aim to only buy what they need. Another 24 per cent will be reducing travelling to see friends and family. We’ll also try to limit influences on spending too, with 14 per cent of us planning to leave the kids at home when shopping, and a fifth (19 per cent) aiming to stay strong and not yield to pester power when it comes to Christmas spending.

Christmas spending Average Cost
Christmas Day Meal £48.30
Food snacks and treats £52.40
Drink £47
Presents and stockings for family £162.30
Presents and stockings for friends £48.60
Crackers, wrapping paper, Christmas cards £25.30
Decorations & Christmas tree £29.50
Petrol and other travel £31.90
Entertaining guests £33.20
Total £478.50

Morrisons is actively supporting families shopping on a budget this Christmas, and is offering savings of £59.20 from an average spend on presents, our Christmas Saver scheme and the Christmas shopping basket[2].

Research conducted by Vision Critical, October 2012 amongst 2,005 adults aged 18+ with children, who are responsible for their household’s shopping budget.

[1] Christmas lunch at £2.49 per head, from Morrisons:
Based on a meal for 8 people:

Turkey Whole Basted British Frozen Turkey, 2.6-3.8kg £9.00
Vegetables Maris Piper Potatoes, 1kg £1.00
M Savers Frozen Sprouts, 1kg 75p
M Savers Parsnips, 850g 70p
M Savers Carrots, 1kg 55p
Stuffing M Savers Sage & Onion Stuffing, 85g 15p
Cranberry Sauce M Savers Cranberry Sauce, 200g 50p
Christmas Pudding M Savers Christmas Pudding, 454g x 2 85p each
Christmas Cake Morrisons Iced Top Fruit Cake, 900g £3.40
Brandy Butter M Savers Brandy Butter, 200g £1.00
Mince Pies M Savers Mince Pies 6 pack x 2 60p per pack
TOTAL £19.95
Price per head (8 people) £2.49

[2] Morrisons Christmas shopping savings calculation:
Morrisons savings = (6% Fuel Saver x Cost of Presents) + £30 Collector Card + Saving on Christmas Food & drink

For the average household in this research:
Morrisons saving = (6% fuel saver x £210.90 on presents) + £30 Christmas Saver + £16.55 saving on Christmas food & drink basket = £59.20
The Fuel Saver 6% is based on a 60 litre fill up of a car. Fuel Saver is a new way of paying for products on the high street which gives customers much-needed savings at the pump. Morrisons has joined up with 38 of the nation’s favourite high street brands – such as Next, Boots and Homebase – to bring Fuel Saver to the UK. It works by families using gift cards bought in Morrisons to pay for purchases on the high street. Customers pick up the cards during their weekly shop, they receive a voucher which gives them money off fuel: 1p-a-litre for every £10 they spend when they next fill up. They then use their gift cards like cash to pay for their shopping on the high street.

Christmas Saver is Morrisons’ biggest ever Christmas voucher saving scheme which this year will give shoppers £30 off their Christmas shopping. The 2012 Christmas Saver launches on Monday 29th October and runs for 8 weeks. During that time, customers will get a Christmas Saver coupon for every £40 they spend. If they collect eight consecutive coupons over eight weeks, they will receive Morrisons biggest ever single Christmas reward: a £30 off a £40 or more’ shop coupon which they can use from 17th – 31st December inclusive.

The basket of products used to calculate food & drink savings is the one used last year by the Grocer Magazine which includes 33 products such as port, turkey and stuffing. Morrisons has calculated the savings on the full basket available through festive offers.


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