Are you one of those people who started planning their Christmas shopping for this year after the last mince pie of 2015 had been devoured? Or are you more of a last-minute gift-buyer who’ll be relying on pure adrenaline and whatever’s left in the shops on Christmas Eve? According to research from PricewaterhouseCoopers, more people are closer to the latter than the former, with the busiest Christmas shopping day this year predicted to be 23rd December.
However, there’s also evidence that more people have been beginning their festive purchases earlier over recent years. The John Lewis Christmas TV advert has become something of a modern festive event, with the release of the store’s yuletide promotional offering now signalling the beginning of the festive period for many. In the past few years, this has happened around the first weekend in November, with other retailers such as Morrisons and Asda following suit, suggesting that a lot of people will begin their Christmas shopping around that date.
With some leaving it to the eleventh hour, and others planning months in advance, it’s difficult to know when is the best time to get your Christmas shopping done. The Black Friday sales began in America as a shopping day following Thanksgiving Day – the equivalent to our Boxing Day sales – but have been imported to the UK in recent years to offer a popular twenty-four hour period to grab a bargain at the end of November. Cyber Monday, the online equivalent occurring a few days later, has also proven popular, with both days providing the opportunity to save money on Christmas purchases.
The fall in the value of the pound following the Brexit result in June may prove a further incentive to buy presents earlier this year. With inflation looming and the cost of imported products going up as a result, getting your Christmas shopping out of the way sooner rather than later could end up saving you some money if the pound continues on its downward trend.