After the Covid restrictions, could now be time to embrace Christmas with family and friends at home? Playing host to those closest to us at this special time of year is long overdue. And, as we enter a period of economic instability, it is the perfect time to support one another and share the joy of the festive season at home with family and good friends.
As the worst of the pandemic fades into the past, the much-talked-about cost-of-living crisis and global uncertainty have stepped up to be a new cause for concern. This is giving rise to ultra-cautious spending patterns.
There are many factors driving this hesitation to splash out on large purchases; rising inflation, mortgage rate increases, the risk of large energy bills, plus global instability are just some of the reasons for tightening our purse strings. According to research by Retail Economics, this has a knock-on effect, with almost 60% of shoppers expecting to cut spending on non-food items this Christmas.
The Bank of England tells us that a typical family spends almost £740 more in December compared to other times of the year, and yet Retail Economics predicts a 22% cut in this spending as the rising cost of living eats into our spare cash. We are bracing ourselves for an uncertain winter.
Changing holiday habits
The Brits love to go abroad, whether in the height of summer or for a bit of winter sun we are huge fans of our two weeks of sunshine. These last couple of years, though, it seems UK residents are resisting holidaying overseas. Figures from The Office of National Statistics (ONS) show that, in April 2022, there was a 33% decrease in the number of people traveling abroad compared to the same time in 2019. The economic forecast has worsened still since this report, so the Christmas getaway could be severely impacted.
On the contrary, staycations have remained hugely popular despite travel restrictions being lifted. Google Trends data found searches for UK holidays had increased by 56%, and with many of us clamoring for beachside cottages or holiday parks, prices have sky-rocketed.
In the name of cutting costs this Christmas, why not throw open your doors to the family and spend this time together? Rather than spend, spend, spending, think about sharing the cost, sharing and load and sharing the love, instead.
Home comforts all year round
While you’re thinking about inviting the family over, maybe, like many of us who’ve been cooped up at home over lockdown you’re coming to realise your mobility isn’t what it used to be, and the stairs aren’t as easy to climb?
When you consider reduced mobility alongside the eye-watering cost of moving house and add in the increased desire to ‘age in place’ it might be time to make a smart investment. One that will continue to keep giving into next year and beyond once the glitz of tinsel and baubles has faded.
We’re talking about the Stiltz home lifts. We all know how practical installing a domestic lift can be. Aside from getting us up and down the stairs, imagine the fun next Christmas when Santa, instead of coming ‘down the chimney’, descends in the home lift to squeals of delight from children and grandchildren?
Memories truly are made of this.