in Britain are among the most likely in Europe to associate Christmas with
stress, according to a 25-country study by Lidl and Nielsen on men and women’s
attitudes and roles around Christmas.
Over six-in-10 (61%) British women say Christmas means stress – only women in
three countries find it more stressful (Sweden, Slovakia and the Czech
Republic). This compares to 54% of British men.
In all 25 countries, except Switzerland, women find Christmas more stressful than men.
Christmas preparations and planning are still done mostly by women: 66% said they organise the Christmas food, 75% buy the gifts while 78% take care of the Christmas decorations, including dressing the tree.
The cost of Christmas is unlikely to help stress levels. Nielsen Homescan data reveals the typical December grocery shopping bill is 20% higher (£371) than the average bill across the 11 other months, while the number of shopping trips increases 6%.
Christmas is obviously good news for retailers and brands. Alcohol sees the biggest increase in spend (62%) in December compared to the average month, followed by confectionery (up 33%) and Health & Beauty (up 20%).
Although total grocery sales in December are 20% higher than the average month, online grocery sales only rise 6%. Watkins notes this may look low in comparison but the differential is “more about the surge in sales that the larger out-of-town stores see in December, particularly people buying fresh produce in the final few days before Christmas.”