Reining in Christmas could boost UK savings by billions, Axa Wealth says

A little more restraint at Christmastime could create £2bn worth of savings that would boost people’s financial goals, Axa Wealth says.

The wealth management firm commissioned research house Populus to find out how many Britons overspent in last year’s festivities and by how much.

The firm found just under a quarter of the adult population spent more than they had planned – based on a 2,000  person sample – by an average of £204.09.

Axa Wealth extrapolated those findings to the whole of the UK, estimating 10.3 million adults blew their 2013 Christmas budget totalling more than £2bn.

The average £204.09 splurge could have been put away into an Isa where, after nine year’s growth at an expected 5 per cent it would have grown to £2,567, Axa says.

That would mean the hypothetical £2bn total saved in 2013 would have grown to about £25.15bn in 10 years, according to Axa’s numbers.

Axa Wealth head of investing Adrian Lowcock says people do not have to be “a Scrooge” to save at Christmas.

“Most of us love Christmas and the term ‘excess’ is often associated with the festive season,” he says.

But with a bit less extravagance, it is possible to put away money for the future, even in the winter holidays, he explains. 

“The money that might be spent on food that might go to waste; an extra Xbox One game or a Boxing Day ‘bargain’ that you didn’t really need, could be put aside and invested instead,” he says.

“In ten years’ time this pot might help pay for your child’s first car or the first term of their university fees. You might feel a bit better at the end of the holiday season if you knew that, while celebrating with your loved ones, you were investing in their future too.”