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Penny-pinching consumers planning frugal festivities

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Research from Birmingham Midshires reveals that 78% of Britons are taking sensible steps to make Christmas more affordable this year.

Christmas budgets have fallen by £102 this year, with Britons expecting to pay out £604 on festivities this year, compared with £706 this time last year. But that doesn’t mean that Christmas will be all doom and gloom.

The research points to a revival of money-saving Christmas traditions and Christmas dinner at home. There is also positive news on budgeting for Christmas, with one in four Britons having enough money already saved up to cover 87% the cost of Christmas (£527).

With 78% of Britons taking steps to make Christmas more affordable, the most common ways of cutting back on costs are spending less on gifts, purchasing presents and other festive supplies in advance of December and reusing last year’s Christmas tree.

Tim Hague, director of savings and investments at Birmingham Midshires, said: “The financial climate certainly doesn’t mean that Christmas is cancelled. As our research shows, Britons up and down the country will be cutting back on spending this year without sacrificing on many Christmas treats.

“This could have a very positive effect on New Year finances. Planning for the future and saving early for Christmas means that people will be less likely to suffer a financial hangover come January and could leave many a lot better prepared for 2009.”

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