Consumers to spend €1.5bn this Christmas

Irish people are going to splurge almost €1.5bn on food, drink, and presents this Christmas — more than any country in Europe.

The annual Deloitte consumer survey of Christmas spending predicts the average spend in more than 1.6m households in Ireland this Christmas, excluding travel, will be €894, with an average of €484.81 on gifts, €258.84 on food and €150.76 on socialising. The majority of budgets will go on gifts (30%), followed by food (28%), and socialising (24%).

However, despite spending more than consumers across Europe, Ireland is one of five countries where consumers plans to spend less. Consumers in France (-0.9%), Portugal (-2.3%), Italy (-2.4%), and Greece (-12.8%) also intend on decreasing spending.

In keeping with the trend since the downturn in the economy, some 22% of Irish consumers will focus more on buying products and gifts that are on sale, while 13% will focus more on buying useful gifts. Some 56% of respondents indicated they will reduce the amount they buy on impulse.

Loyalty and reward programmes influence Irish consumers’ decision making more so than their European counterparts.

Immediate discounts were most effective, as identified by 43%. This was followed by earning points towards vouchers for use in several retailers (17%), earning points to earn vouchers for use in the store of purchase (14%), and future discounts (13%).

In terms of timing, 47% of Irish consumers’ Christmas shopping has been completed before December and 32% said they will buy their gifts in the first half of December, with the remaining 21% spreading it over Christmas.

Deloitte partner Kevin Sheehan said despite being big Christmas spenders the recession was clearly still a concern of consumers. “The findings suggest that, as ever, Christmas is an extremely important time for the Irish and they will celebrate accordingly. While consumers will spend marginally less, retailers will be enthused somewhat that the rate of decline in spending has stabilised and is in line with last year.”

Conor Healy, chief executive of Cork Chamber of Commerce, said the trend towards pre-Christmas sales, as well as January sales, was something retailers had become used to in recent years, and advised consumers to think about where they spend their money.

Festive spending

* Consumers predict they will spend 1.7% less.

* The most popular gifts Irish consumers like to receive are books, money and clothes /shoes.

* On average, each child will receive six gifts.

More on this topic

Making Cents: Preparing for a fresh financial start to 2020Making Cents: Preparing for a fresh financial start to 2020

My Job: Julieann Brennan, Head of HR with Jurys Inn and Leonardo Hotels, UK & IrelandMy Job: Julieann Brennan, Head of HR with Jurys Inn and Leonardo Hotels, UK & Ireland

How to tell the real from fake reviews for goods onlineHow to tell the real from fake reviews for goods online

Survival of the wealthiest in Ireland’s tightening jobs marketSurvival of the wealthiest in Ireland’s tightening jobs market


Kate Tempest’s Vicar Street show began with the mother of all selfie moments. The 33 year-old poet and rapper disapproves of mid-concert photography and instructed the audience to get their snap-happy impulses out of the way at the outset. What was to follow would, she promised, be intense. We should give ourselves to the here and now and leave our phones in our pockets.Kate Tempest dives deep and dark in Dublin gig

Des O'Sullivan examines the lots up for auction in Bray.A Week in Antiques: Dirty tricks and past political campaigns

Following South Africa’s deserved Rugby World Cup victory I felt it was about time that I featured some of their wines.Wine with Leslie Williams

All your food news.The Menu: Food news with Joe McNamee

More From The Irish Examiner