Sunday, 22nd July 2018
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A new survey conducted by Christmas FM, the hugely popular radio station which raises hundreds of thousands of euro for charity each year, has revealed that we are an organised nation with 72% of us completing our Christmas shopping by November.

While 18% pick up gifts throughout the year, only one in four of us complete our shopping in December (27%). Just 1.4% of us work best under pressure and leave all the Christmas shopping until the 11th hour on Christmas Eve!

The Irish are generous nation at this time of year with almost one in ten of us (8.8%) spending up to €2,500 on Christmas gifts for others. A little over 25% of us spend up to €1,000, with one in three of us spending between €250 - €500 when shopping for others over the festive season.

Shopping locally is also important to us with one in every two conducting their shopping locally (46.6%). A further 47.8% of people complete their Christmas wish-list with a mixture of online shopping and picking things up from local shop owners. 2% of us admit to travelling around the country for the best deals while 2.1% travel to the European Christmas markets and 1.5% of us complete our shopping in the US.

Christmas food is a highlight for many of us during the festive season with 76.1% of us looking forward to the main event – Christmas dinner with all the works! Hot chocolate tops the polls as our favourite festive drink (43.5%) with chocolates from the sweet tin (48.5%) our favourite treat to splurge on. More than half of us look forward to putting on the Christmas spread for friends and family (53.4%) and then putting our feet up after to enjoy the rest of the day. A further 35% of us still pop round to Mum and Dad’s for the best meal of the year!

Barbie and Action Man (27%) bring back the happiest memories and take the top spot as our favourite toy ever received at Christmas. Rollerblades (20%) and Gameboys (17%) are also some of our all-time favourite gifts with Walkie-Talkies (9%), Tomagotchi’s (7%) and Mr. Freeze Slushy Maker (5%) also making the list.

Further interesting insights from the Christmas FM survey include:

- Amy Huberman (46.4%) and Michael Fassbender (27.4%) are two famous faces we would be happy to have join us at the dinner table on Christmas day with Paul O’ Connell (25.7%) and Pippa O’ Conner (17.1%) also proving popular dinner guests

- 58.3% of Irish people engage in charity work over the Christmas period, including attending fundraising events such as carol services

- 49.3% of Irish people donate to Irish charities during the Christmas season with 27.8% donating to charities abroad

- 42.8% of people feel Christmas begins when Christmas FM is back on air. A further 17.4% feel Christmas begins when the Late Late Toy Show takes place

- 53% of us feel the St. Stephen’s Day sales take away from Christmas and end the holiday season too soon

- Almost 64% of us open our Christmas presents first thing on Christmas morning

- 36% of us feel that Christmas has become too commercialised

This year, Christmas FM will be raising awareness and funds for the global charity Sightsavers, who aim to give the gift of sight this Christmas, saving over 5,000 people worldwide from a life of blindness, by providing sight-restoring operations.

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