Christmas shopping and spending statistics UK | 2022

How much are Brits going to spend on gifts this year?

From watching the lights turn on in your local town centre to tucking into a roast dinner, there’s nothing quite like a white Christmas in the UK. However, the cost of living crisis is causing Brits to tighten their spending on Christmas shopping this year. We looked into how much Brits are spending on gifts over this holiday season compared to previous years.

Quick overview

  • In 2022, Brits are projected to spend £430 per person on Christmas gifts.
  • Spending on Christmas gifts will drop 22% from 2021, when the average Brit spent £548.
  • The United Kingdom will spend £20.1 billion on Christmas gifts in 2022, 21% less than in 2021 (£25.5 billion).
  • 9 in 10 (89%) of Brits will buy Christmas gifts in 2022 – this totals 40.6 million Brits.
  • Men are projected to spend £493 on gifts in 2022, while women plan to spend £370.
  • Those in Scotland (£606) plan to spend the most this Christmas, whereas East Midlands plan to spend the least (£336).

Average Christmas spend per person in the UK

According to our research, the average British adult will spend £430 on Christmas gifts in 2022, a decrease of £119 (22%) from 2021’s budget amid the cost of living crisis. This is also a decrease of £47 (10%) from 2020’s budget and £84 (16%) less than Christmas spend in 2019.

Year Spend per person Overall spend
2022 £429 £20,100,000,000
2021 £548 £25,600,000,000
2020 £476 £24,200,000,000
2019 £513 £26,900,000,000

How many Brits are spending this Christmas

In 2022, 89% of Brits plan to buy Christmas gifts – which totals 46.6 million British adults. This is the same number as 2021, but it is an 8% decrease from 2020 when 97% of the UK population planned to spend on festive gifts.

Planning to spend UK population
% spending in 2022 89%
% spending in 2021 89%
% spending in 2020 97%

Overall Christmas spend in 2022

Overall, people in the UK are planning to spend £20.1 billion this year on Christmas gifts – this is 21% (£5.5 billion) less than 2021’s figure of £25.5 billion. This is the lowest projected spend since the surveys started in 2019, where overall spending hit £26.9 billion – 33% more than in 2022. Even during the COVID-19 pandemic, UK spending on Christmas gifts in 2020 was projected to be 21% higher at £24.3 billion.

Year Overall spend
2022 20.1 billion
2021 25.6 billion
2020 24.3 billion
2019 26.9 billion

Christmas spend by generation

91% of millennials plan to spend on gifts this Christmas, followed by 90% of baby boomers and 89% of generation X. The generations that are least likely to spend this year are generation Z and the silent generation, with 86% and 81% respectively planning on buying Christmas gifts.

Generation % spending on gifts
Generation Z 86%
Millennials 91%
Generation X 89%
Baby boomers 90%
Silent generation 81%

Christmas budgets by generation

In 2022, generation X will spend the most, with a planned budget of £520 per person; however, this is a 10% decrease from 2021 and 2020. This is followed by generation Z, which plan to spend £519 per person this year, a 10% increase from 2021 and a 150% increase from 2020. Millennials plan to spend £445 this Christmas, 28% less than in 2021.

While the silent generation were the highest spenders in 2021, they have dropped to the second-lowest spending generation in 2022, with a planned Christmas spend of £423. This is 40% less than in 2021.

The generation planning to spend the least this Christmas are baby boomers, who plan to spend £334, which is 36% less than generation X (£520) plan to spend on gifts in 2022.

Generation Average spend
Generation Z £519
Millennials £445
Generation X £520
Baby boomers £334
Silent generation £423

Christmas spend by gender

9 out of 10 (90%) women are planning to spend on Christmas gifts in 2022. This is 1% less than in 2021 and 8% less than in 2020. In contrast, 89% of men are planning to spend this Christmas, which is 2% more than in 2021 but 7% less than in 2020. This means that for the third consecutive year, more women than men are planning to buy gifts this Christmas.

Regarding spending, men are planning to spend a third (33%) more than women, with a budget of £493; however, this is £143 less than in 2021 and £3 less than 2020’s spend.

Women plan to spend £370 on presents this year – £102 less than in 2021 and £88 less than 2020’s figure.

Men Women
Average spend 2022 £492 £370
Average spend 2021 £635 £472
Average spend 2020 £495 £458

Christmas spending by region

97% of those in Northern Ireland will be spending on gifts this Christmas, followed by Scotland (94%), West Midlands (92%), South East (91%) and Wales (91%). On the other end of the spectrum, just 83% of those in London will be buying gifts in 2022.

According to our 2022 research, adults in Scotland will be spending the most this Christmas, with a planned spend of £606 per person. However, this is a decrease of 13% from 2021’s budget, when Scots planned to spend £700. London follows with a planned Christmas spend of £534 this year, followed by East of England (£466), Wales (£448) and Northern Ireland (£434) as the highest spending regions.

Adults in the East Midlands have the lowest planned spend of £336 this Christmas, with the South West (£355), North West (£367), South East (£374) and the North East (£416) as the regions planning to keep spending below the national average of £430.

Region % spending for Christmas
Yorkshire and the Humber 84%
London 83%
South West 90%
South East 91%
Wales 91%
Scotland 94%
West Midlands 92%
North West 89%
North East 90%
East of England 88%
Northern Ireland 97%
East Midlands 90%
Region 2022 spend 2021 spend 2020 spend
Yorkshire and the Humber £431 £443 £464
London £534 £1,176 £595
South West £345 £394 £439
South East £374 £531 £435
Wales £448 £383 £611
Scotland £606 £700 £555
West Midlands £401 £302 £452
North West £367 £449 £406
North East £416 £593 £485
East of England £466 £381 £422
Northern Ireland £434 £533 £519
East Midlands £336 £343 £397


  • Finder commissioned Censuswide on 23–25 November 2022 to carry out a nationally representative survey of adults aged 18+. A total of 2,000 people were questioned throughout Great Britain, with representative quotas for gender, age and region.

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