For immediate release
Christmas credit crisis: Brits set to spend over £14 billion on credit cards this Christmas
- Almost 23 million Brits plan to use credit cards to cover their Christmas spending this year.
- Brits using credit cards for Christmas costs will spend an average of £627 each over the festive period.
- Three-fifths (61%) of gen Z plan to use credit cards to cover their Christmas costs, more than any other age group.
- London has the highest number of residents turning to credit cards for their Christmas spending, with 60% planning to do so.
09, November, 2023, LONDON –
Almost 23 million Brits are planning to use credit cards to cover the cost of Christmas gifts and other festive spending this year, according to new research from personal finance comparison site finder.com.
The study found that more than 2 in 5 adults in the UK (43%) are planning to spend an average of £627 on their credit cards this Christmas. This is almost a quarter (23%) of the average monthly salary in the UK, which currently stands at £2,730. Overall, adults planning to use credit cards for their Christmas spending in the UK will rack up over £14.3 billion of debt this year.
Younger generations are more likely to use credit cards for their festive spending
The study highlighted that younger generations are far more likely to use credit cards for their Christmas purchases than their older counterparts. Three-fifths (61%) of those in generation Z (aged 18-23) said that they intend to use credit cards to cover the costs of Christmas gifts and other festive spending this year.
They were closely followed by millennials (aged 24-42), with more than half (56%) of this age group putting Christmas spending on their credit cards, and generation X, with almost 2 in 5 (39%) planning to do so.
On the other end of the spectrum, baby boomers (aged 55-73) are the least likely to use credit cards for their Christmas purchases this year, with less than a third (29%) of this generation planning to do so. They were followed by just over a third (35%) of the silent generation (aged 74+).
Although fewer members of the silent generation are planning to use credit cards for their Christmas spending, this generation intends to spend more on their cards than any other age group, with an average spend of £765.
They were followed by millennials, with an average credit card spend of £741, gen Z with an average credit card spend of £636 and gen X with a spend of £610 on average.
Once again, baby boomers were at the lower end of the spectrum, with those using credit cards planning to spend an average of £401 this Christmas.
3 in 5 Londoners are turning to credit cards to cover their Christmas costs this year
Londoners have the highest number of adults who intend to use credit cards, with 3 in 5 (60%) planning to spend an average of £624 on credit cards for Christmas. Northern Ireland was next, with almost half (47%) of residents planning to spend an average of £550 on credit cards this Christmas, followed by the West Midlands, where 45% of residents are planning to spend an average of £596.
Conversely, those living in Wales are most likely to avoid credit card debt this Christmas, with only a third of residents (33%) planning to use credit cards with an average spend of £379. They are followed by Yorkshire and the Humber residents and those in the North West, with 38% of Brits in these regions planning to use credit cards for their Christmas spending, with an average spend of £738 and £835 respectively.
To see the research in full visit: https://www.finder.com/uk/christmas-shopping-statistics
Commenting on the findings, Kate Steere, deputy editor at personal finance comparison site finder.com said:
“Heading into the Christmas period, the use of credit cards is always a tempting option for those who might otherwise struggle to cover the additional costs of the holidays. However, it’s very concerning to see credit card use reach such heights amongst UK consumers this year. Particularly as the cost of living crisis continues to squeeze household incomes, heightening the chance of individuals missing vital repayments.
We know that missing even just one credit card payment can have serious implications on someone’s credit score. In fact, we previously investigated this issue and found that just one missed credit card payment can downgrade your credit score from “Fair” to “Poor”. This can end up costing you significantly in the long run due to higher interest charges. Not to mention the disadvantage it puts households in when applying for loans in the future.
Credit cards should not be used for any spending that you can’t realistically afford. We urge any individuals planning to use credit cards this Christmas to only do so for spending they know they can repay within the given time frame, to avoid unwanted additional charges and damage to your credit score.”
Finder commissioned Censuswide on 01/11/2023 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
The information in this release is accurate as of the date published, but rates, fees and other product features may have changed. Please see updated product information on finder.com's review pages for the current correct values.
finder.com is a personal finance website, which helps consumers compare products online so they can make better informed decisions. Consumers can visit the website to compare utilities, mortgages, credit cards, insurance products, shopping voucher codes, and so much more before choosing the option that best suits their needs.
Best of all, finder.com is completely free to use. We’re not a bank or insurer, nor are we owned by one, and we are not a product issuer or a credit provider. We’re not affiliated with any one institution or outlet, so it’s genuine advice from a team of experts who care about helping you find better.
finder.com launched in the UK in February 2017 and is privately owned and self-funded by two Australian entrepreneurs – Fred Schebesta and Frank Restuccia – who successfully grew finder.com.au to be Australia's most visited personal finance website (Source: Experian Hitwise).