Only 1 in 10 expect politics to invade the Christmas lunch conversation

Britons are most likely to watch a Christmas Special or the Queen's Speech together but very few expect Christmas dinner to be ruined.

Despite the recent election, only 13% of Britons that will spend Christmas Day with others expect politics to cause an argument during their Christmas lunch/ dinner. Those that voted for Labour in the recent General Election are most likely to have a political debate, 1 in 5 (21%) expect politics to cause a discussion over the dinner table while 18% of Lib Dems expect the same thing. Only 7% of Conservative voters expect a political argument, perhaps due to their recent victory. 

Of the options given to Britons in the latest Omnibus survey for Ipsos MORI, the most likely event is watching a Christmas special/ the Queen’s Speech. Over half (53%) expect to sit down and watch something Christmassy on the television. 

This is closely followed by playing a board game (50%). Perhaps surprisingly, it is the younger members of the public who are most likely to expect this to happen; 63% of 18-34-year olds expect to get the Monopoly board out while only 41% of those older than 55 think this will happen. 

There is concern about the quality of gift giving. Half (50%) expect that they will need batteries for presents, while another 49% expect someone in their household will want to exchange one of the gifts they have been given. 

Two in five expect a member of the household to drink too much while 47% expect the family to go for a walk. While a third (33%) expect someone to forget something needed for the lunch/ dinner, only 9% expect the meal to be completely ruined, 85% are hopeful that the cooking of the Christmas meal to go smoothly. 

Almost three-quarters (73%) expect their household to avoid arguing throughout Christmas Day, 22% think an argument will take place. Similar proportions expect someone to cry, 22% expect someone will end up in tears while 68% expect eyes to stay dry throughout the day. 

Only 21% of Britons expect to play charades with their family and friends this year, three-quarters (74%) expect this won’t happen, including 47% who think it is very unlikely.

Technical note:  

  • Research was carried out by Ipsos MORI, surveying a nationally representative quota sample of 1,138 adults in Great Britain aged 18+, using its online i:omnibus between 13th and 16th December 2019. Data were weighted to the known offline population proportions for age within gender, government office region, working status, social grade, education and political vote on the general election in 2019. The study focused on a number of areas, including questions to those who will spend Christmas Day with someone (1,032 Adults aged 18+ across Great Britain).
  • Ipsos Observer runs regular cost-effective Omnibus studies face-to-face, by telephone and online. For further information on our omnibus offer, please visit our website, or call our Omnibus team who will be happy to discuss your research needs.

More insights about Culture