Guess How Much Parents Spend At Christmas?

Guess How Much Parents Spend At Christmas?

Avert your eyes if your kids are aged between nine and 13 years old.

According to a study of 5,000 parents, commissioned by, parents of children aged between nine and 13 face the most expensive Christmas. Those with kids in this age bracket can expect to shell out... wait for it... £929 on presents, food and drink and Christmas-related days out.

My eyes watered just typing that. But there's good news, too – the results show that festive spending doesn’t increase as the kids get older, with parents who have youngsters aged 14-18 looking at a bill of £927. Yes, that's two quid less. *Cries*

Those with children aged between 0–4 were the thriftiest, with an average spend of £760 overall, and the average spend by parents of children in the 5–8 age group was £870.

It’s not just toys which are becoming more expensive but the costs associated with these toys which parents aren’t taking into account, according to the pollsters.

The research, conducted via, revealed British parents are underestimating the hidden costs of Christmas, with a new games console, sports equipment, or a mobile phone potentially costing parents hundreds of additional pounds every year.

Four in ten parents admitted they don’t consider the ongoing costs associated with gifts such as games consoles and mobile phones, forking out an average of £100 in additional costs since last Christmas.

But (unsurprisingly, some might say...) mums are better at budgeting for these hidden costs, with six in 10 saying they accounted for extra money they might need.

And the majority of parents agree it is the number of electronic gift options that are the cause of a costly Christmas.

Half of parents put expense down to more choice, with one in five blaming it on increased competition with other mums and dads.

And one third attribute it to increased competition amongst children.

Shakila Hashmi, Head of Money at, said:

“Parents are under no illusion at the growing cost of Christmas, but it would seem the hidden costs of gifts for their children are still catching some out. Positively, a number of parents are taking the necessary steps to prepare themselves for the ongoing costs some presents create. However, it’s worrying that a significant number are still failing to do so, meaning that they are often faced with surprising bills as a result. I would encourage all parents to think ahead to ensure that they are not caught out in the long run and - more broadly – to think of other ways in which they can keep Christmas costs down, such as shopping around earlier in the season, or looking online to ensure that they get the best deals. Not only will this lighten the financial load, but it should also allow parents to enjoy their family Christmas more as a result!”

Speaking of which, don't forget to bookmark our Black Friday page so you can snap up some Christmas gifts at a fraction of the normal price!

We'd love to hear your thoughts on this story. Do you spend more or less on the kids at Christmas than the figures cited in this research?

TOPICS:   Christmas UK


  • Rebecca W.

    lol I wish I could get all my shopping done for that!!!

  • Hayley R.

    just what we were talking about today! Told you £70-£80 wasn't enough :joy::joy:

  • Chloe M.

    !! Crazy money spent :open_mouth:

  • Celia M.

    Is that for 1 child famiky inc food and drinks and activities? 2 kids? 3?

    • Beankeeper

      Exactly what I was wondering :)

  • Kerry C.

    That doesn’t seem loads to me with 4 kids

  • Lynsey S.

    That's a crazy amount of its just for 1 child!!

  • Siöbhan M.

    That seems about right to be fair

  • Stephanie �.

    I wish I could do Christmas for that amount. I've only got 2 kids and I can quadruple that easily. What do you say xxx

    • Donna J.

      Lol, £900 yeah right, I've spent more than that on Bentley alone xxx

    • Stephanie �.

      I would jump for joy and throw a party if Christmas only cost me £900. Lol xxx

    • Donna J.

      Ow but that would push it over £900 lol xxx

  • Chantelle M.

    imagine all this for 900 days out,toys, clothes and food :see_no_evil:xx

  • Armitage A.

    And this is why we go abroad! Hot weather plenty to do and complete and utter fun!

  • Jade M.

    Ive got 3 kids and i only spent £350 for all their xmas toys, i think the more u spend on a child it just spoilz them too much and leaves u without ideas for other occassions if u overspend at xmas, any of my kids wud be over the moon with even one toy xx

  • Roisin A.

    I've 3 kids n with food n drinks I probably spent more than that. Don't dare work it out as I'd probably cry :joy::joy:.

  • Vikki T.

    Nearly a grand for how many??! I do the whole family for that amount (as in all inlaws, grandparents etc) although we dont eat christmas dinner and neither of us drink so that must save us some.

  • Carol M.

    Yea. I thought my friends spoiled their kids till I had my own. Christmas parties, dresses, gifts to their friends, panto, seeing Santa, and of course gifts etc does all mount up. Food and drink?? Don't we feed them anyways! I think gifts for a child prob be around a few hundred now. Maybe have to budget more the more kids you have. My prob is December birthdays :see_no_evil::sob:

  • Amelia A.

    It all depends on how much you earn, you can't compare these things. I think its taking away the meaning of Christmas x

    • Samantha B.

      Well said, I'm sitting here thinking how these people have this much money ! Plus Xmas is about friends amd family x

    • Michelle S.

      I love Xmas but your right it has lost its true meaning. It makes me so sad knowing my children have presents to open and some will have nothing when it’s shoved in everyone’s faces all the time too.

  • Toni J.

    I set a budget of £300 per child. And allow an extra £100 for food etc which comes to £1000 for 3 children so depends on if those figures are for a family or per child

  • Laura W.

    Wow... By the time my kids have presents off nannyx1/grandadx1/auntx2/unclex1 it doesnt really leave lots to buy. My near 7yr old son had autism an isn't really into 'toys' this yr he's had a 2nd hand flat screen pc computer with desk/chair etc of grandad.. Then the others put money together for lots of creative stuff...with school 5days a week after school club 3 days plus cooking Club swimming lessons an weekend outings.. He just wouldn't find time to play with a crap load of unnecessary toys! My 3.5yr old daughter is the same.. Once everyone has put they money together doesn't leave loads to buy.. Again nursery 3 full days, weekly play date with friends the other two, ballet, acrobatics, jazz, swimming and weekend stuff she just wouldn't find time for me to justify spending a crap load of money.. We end up spending around £50-75 each on them, a Christmas panto and a Christmas eve box.. So in this house definitely not spoilt.

    For those that go stir crazy spend a fortune and the stuff you buy gets unplayed with after a week or so... Well your money, your choice! Each to their own.. If you've got it then spend it I guess...

    I don't see how people have these massive food bills over the holidays.. We just consume breakfast/lunch/dinner snacks as usual like we would on a normal day lol.. Again that's just me tho lol.... We don't become more hungry because it's Christmas.

    £150 between two kids on presents. £50 panto £50 Christmassy day out £24 santa visit £80 (£20 each for my mom dad sister and sister £60 (£10 each on my neices an nephews) £50 (£5 each on teacher/ta 3nursery staff and 3 after school staff.. Dance school teachers x2 Maybe £50 on new decs... Advent calenders.. Etc Even that's only £510 :relaxed: Maybe another £50 a Christmas top/dress... Xmas pj's..

    Little things like Xmas books/dvds/pjs/stocking fillers/Xmas gifts for others I tend to buy weekly on offer an just allow an extra £10 per week on my weekly food shop so when your buying it spread across a few months you don't have that big expense in one go right before Xmas.

    • Laura D.

      Panto for £ can be near that for 1 ticket :dizzy_face: x

    • Laura W.

      Yes last year we got 4 tickers for Cinderella for £20 :wink: an it's was fab and a hit with the kids to m

  • Samantha H.

    then imagine having their birthdays days before :rolling_eyes::joy:

    • Natalie H.

      aye we are defo at least double that figure :joy::joy::joy::joy::joy:

  • Alyssa M.

    I spend nowhere near that i dont need to be raising spoiled kids we do a main present and some smaller ones im not prepared to raise them to expect to be given gifts that amount to silly amounts of money im a single working parent and want my kids to appreciate what they got not grow up expecting to be spoiled every year

  • Gail S.

    think we overspend slightly, bloody spoilt kids :joy: we are completely ruining them and turning them into ungrateful little shits :joy::joy:

    • Anne H.

      Ah well I saw this and thought ooo maybe we have :joy::joy:ungrateful little shits :joy::joy::joy:

  • Louise W.

    Who even cares! I hate these posts that keep popping up, spend what you want on your OWN children. We all have different views and budgets and there is nothing wrong in that. No need to judge what others spend as it’s no one else business!

  • Carol W.

    It's not about how Much you spend its surely about family time And being together and enjoying the day.

  • Sarahjane N.

    That seems about right for us with two kids

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