Irish consumers will spend about €1.55 billion on Christmas this year, up 3.5 per cent from last year, according to a report published by today.

Of that figure, €839.9 million will be spent on gifts, with almost two-thirds of consumers planning to spend up to €300 on presents.

The average Irish Christmas budget is €578, but 13 per cent of respondents said they have budgeted for €1,000 or more.

Nearly two-thirds said their overall Christmas spend will be similar to last year, while 8.8 per cent said they’d probably spend more this festive season.

A quarter however, said they’d probably scale back their Christmas spend.

The average Irish consumer spends about 12 hours on Christmas-related shopping, while 7.1 per cent said they spend more than 48 hours shopping in the run up to Christmas.

A majority of respondents said they favoured a mix of online and in-store shopping, but nearly 13 per cent said they planned to shop online only.

Forty per cent said they wouldn’t shop in the seasonal sales immediately after Christmas, but one in five said they’d get back to the shops after New Year’s Day.

The tradition of sending Christmas cards remains alive and well in Ireland, with nearly 70 per cent planning to send up to 30 cards this year.

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