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Families to spend €1,500 on average for Christmas

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Richard Guiney of Dublin Town pictured on Grafton Street. Photo: Damien Eagers.

Richard Guiney of Dublin Town pictured on Grafton Street. Photo: Damien Eagers.

Richard Guiney of Dublin Town pictured on Grafton Street. Photo: Damien Eagers.

TRADITIONS like attending pantos and buying a Christmas jumper are at risk this year as people look to curtail festive spending.

Christmas is set to cost families on average €1,500, but 21pc of people intend to spend less money on presents, according to a new study.

More than a quarter of people - 27pc - surveyed for insurer Aviva want to spend less money on decorations, while novelty Christmas jumpers could see sales drop with a possible 19pc decrease in people buying Christmas Day outfits.

Meanwhile, 23pc of those surveyed said they will spend less this year on socialising and going to events such as pantomimes.

Richard Guiney, CEO of Dublin Town, a collective of 2,500 city centre businesses, said the recession has affected how people will be spend their money this Christmas.

memories

However, he said that it is important that people still embrace the traditions.

"I still have memories of coming into town as a child and being overawed by all the lights, and that is an important part of that time of year," he said.

"If things have not recovered to pre-recession levels for families we would encourage them to still come in and see the Christmas lights and enjoy the atmosphere," he added.

Spending on presents will account for the biggest Christmas time expense. Research shows that the average person intends to spend €620 on gifts.

Food and drink accounts for the next largest bill at €340 despite 18pc of people saying that they intend to consume less than last year.

Despite Christmas outfits being at risk, Mr Guiney is confident the Christmas jumper will still be a common sight.

"We are having a competition later this month on O'Connell Street to see how many people turn up in a Christmas jumper, so that is all great fun and I think we'll do very well," he said.

traditions

"Even during the recession we took Christmas very seriously and we spend more than other nations because it is part of our traditions and it is a nice time of year," Mr Guiney added.

Among the other headings, people will spend an estimated €228 attending Christmas parties, family events and pantos while home decoration and items such as Christmas crackers will cost a family €210.

hnews@herald.ie


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