Women bear the brunt of festive stress, but Britons still looking forward to Christmas

Ipsos MORI's Political Monitor shows that Britons are looking forward to Christmas and are not worried about the cost.

Women bear the brunt of festive stress 

One in four men say they haven’t yet done any Christmas shopping this year 

Men lag behind women when it comes to Christmas shopping, while women are feeling more stressed about their festive preparations, new polling from Ipsos MORI reveals. 

One in four women (27%) feel stressed about their Christmas preparations, with seven percent very stressed and 20% fairly stressed. In contrast, just 14% of men feel stressed about Christmas (four percent very stressed, 10% fairly stressed). Overall, five percent of Britons are very stressed about their Christmas preparations, with 15% fairly stressed. Three in ten Britons (29%) are not very stressed, while 50% are not stressed at all.

One in four men (23%) say they have not done any Christmas shopping so far, compared with just seven percent of women. Six in ten Britons (59%) have done all of their Christmas shopping; 11% say they have done around half, while 27% have done not very much or none at all.

Seven in ten Conservatives (71%) have done all or most of their Christmas shopping, making them the most prepared political group. Conservatives are also the least stressed about Christmas, with 12% very or fairly stressed, compared with 20% of Liberal Democrats, 25% of Labour supporters and 26% of UKIP supporters.

Our enthusiasm for Christmas hasn’t dimmed as the 21st Century has progressed, with eight in ten Britons (81%) looking forward to Christmas (17% are not looking forward to Christmas). These are identical figures to when we last asked the question, back in December 2000. UKIP supporters are feeling the least festive, though the majority are still enthusiastic about the festive season; seven in ten (69%) of them are looking forward to Christmas, with 28% not looking forward to Christmas.

One in three (32%) are worried about the cost of Christmas, while 66% are not worried. This is down from the beginning of the century, however; 40% were worried about Christmas costs in December 2000, while 58% were not worried. Young people are more likely to be feeling the festive financial strain: more than four in ten (43%) of 18-34 year-olds are worried about Christmas costs, compared with just 23% of those aged 55+.

Gideon Skinner, Head of Political Research at Ipsos MORI, said:

“Christmas is meant to be a time for sharing - but our survey suggests the burden isn't shared totally equally between men and women.  Women are twice as likely to say they feel stressed about their Christmas preparations, while nearly a quarter of men say they haven't done any of their Christmas shopping so far.  But that still doesn't stop the vast majority of people looking forward to Christmas itself.”


Technical note

Ipsos MORI interviewed a representative sample of 1,012 adults aged 18+ across Great Britain. Interviews were conducted by telephone 13-15 December 2014.  Data are weighted to match the profile of the population.



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