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Habit of thrift well-established among Brits, finds survey

Cherry Reynard
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Cherry Reynard

Thrifty Brits make full use of vouchers and discounts.

Thrift is alive and well among cost-conscious Brits, with one in four having used free gifts from shops as Christmas gifts for friends and relatives this festive period, according to research from customer insight specialist Aimia.

Around one-third of Brits expected to spend more on the holiday season compared to last year, but 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 research shows that bargain hunting and loyalty points have become a central part of household budgeting. 22% of those surveyed said they would struggle to afford the cost of Christmas were it not for loyalty points and rewards. Likewise, 32% agree that offers and discounts are essential for making Christmas affordable.

Jan-Pieter Lips, President of Aimia, EMEA, said: “During the recession we developed new coping mechanisms, such as points collecting and rewards seeking. These have now evolved into normal behaviour, which is even more pronounced at Christmas.”

Savvy shoppers were also willing to use 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.