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One in four consumers used free gifts as Xmas presents

Tuesday January 6, 2015 at 8:01pm
One in four UK consumers admitted they planned to use free gifts from shops as Christmas presents for friends and relatives over the Christmas period, as cost-conscious Brits looked everywhere to make savings, according to new research from customer insight specialist Aimia. The research showed that while one-third of Brits expected to spend more on the holiday season compared to last year, 88% planned to use rewards, points or deals to cut the cost of Christmas. Over a third of people expected to use more offers and discounts than they did in 2013 and 36% planned to use loyalty points and rewards more than they did in 2013. The findings reveal that while Christmas spending was up, money saving habits, such as collecting loyalty points and bargain hunting, have become a central part of festive household budgeting. For many shoppers they have become absolutely essential at Christmas. One in five (22%) agreed that they would struggle to afford the cost of Christmas were it not for loyalty points and rewards while 32% agreed that offers and discounts were essential for making Christmas affordable. Jan-Pieter Lips (pictured), President of Aimia, EMEA, says: “During the recession we developed new coping mechanisms, such as points collecting and rewards seeking. These have now evolved into normal behaviour, whicwhich is even more pronounced at Christmas.” Aimia’s research shows that the scrimping extended to behaviours such as using free gifts from shops as Christmas gifts for others, buying gifts at a reduced price and waiting until the Boxing Day sales to pick up bargain-priced presents. 71% of people agreed they would be comparing prices between retailers to pick the best deals when doing their Christmas shopping; 47% of people agreed that they were actively looking for discounts from brands they like when doing their Christmas shopping; Around one-quarter (24%) agreed they would use free gifts from shops as Christmas gifts for others this year. Aimia’s Loyalty Lens research took place between 9 Dec – 15 Dec 2014 among 1,489 UK adults. The research was conducted by Research Now.
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