Press release

Christmas just isn't what it used to be

Tuesday 19 December 2006

  • Largest survey ever of over 50s reveals what they really think about Christmas
  • 8 billion* spent on presents by the over 50s this year
  • Men spend 800 million more on presents than women

According to research from leading over 50s experts Saga**, Christmas just isn’t what it used to be. In the largest ever survey of today's over 50s, 67 per cent felt that the true meaning of Christmas has been lost. Half of people questioned thought Christmas was better when they were younger and almost half think Christmas was better for children in the past than it is now.

However, that doesn't stop grandparents wanting to spoil their grandchildren. On average, the over 50s spend 400 on presents for friends and family. Men are more generous than women, spending an extra 40 on presents. That's an additional 800million* worth of presents; however those people without children or grandchildren can expect to save almost 140 on Christmas presents.

The survey also reveals that internet shopping is far more popular amongst the over 50s than most people think. Almost nine in ten (86 per cent) have bought or plan to buy their presents online this Christmas, an example of how today's over 50s are embracing modern technology, more so than some of their younger counterparts.

There are still some Christmas traditions that haven't been lost. These include Bing Crosby's White Christmas which tops the over 50s best loved Christmas song list and they also voted Silent Night their favourite carol. As far as films are concerned, White Christmas is the number one.

-ENDS-

Notes to editors:

*20million people aged over 50 according to ONS stats

**Figures from Populus received 14,809 responses from adults over 50 between 20th November and 7th December 2006.

For further press information please contact the Saga Press Office on: 01303 771529.

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