Insights into Christmas Preparations and Social Trends in Great Britain

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has released the latest findings from the Opinions and Lifestyle Survey, providing a snapshot of public sentiments and trends in Great Britain from November 29 to December 10, 2023. Here are the main points:

Christmas Plans:

  • Approximately 86% of adults plan to meet up with friends and family during the Christmas period.
  • Other plans include attending a place of worship or a carol concert (20%), contributing to a food bank (18%), donating presents to a gift appeal (15%), and volunteering time with groups, clubs, or organizations (8%).

Financial Concerns:

  • About 28% of adults express worry (somewhat or very) about affording their planned Christmas activities, while 43% are somewhat unworried or not worried at all.

Coping with Higher Living Costs:

  • Given the impact of rising living costs, respondents shared actions taken or planned for this Christmas, including spending less on Christmas food or presents (46%), buying earlier to spread the cost (39%), and using personal savings (29%).

Home Comfort and Energy Bills:

  • 20% of adults report occasional, hardly ever, or never being able to keep comfortably warm in their homes, a slight decrease from a year ago.
  • 48% have reduced fuel usage due to increased living costs, down from 56% the previous year.
  • 41% find it very or somewhat difficult to afford their energy bills, a decrease from 47% a year ago.

The data provides a comprehensive view of public opinions and behaviors in the run-up to Christmas amid ongoing economic challenges.