According to a Deloitte survey, increased prices and a change in personal financial situation mean that over a third of people want to or are able to spend even less money on gifts than last year. Almost half of 500 respondents plan to stay at home over Christmas and not travel. These are not good signs for retail, said Orsolya Hegedüs, partner at Deloitte Austria. Despite difficult conditions, most people would not want to give up gifts in general. The overall estimated Christmas gift budget is between 100 and 349 euros. 53 percent plan to spend the same as last year. At Christmas, Austrians most often give their loved ones gift vouchers (32 percent) and time together under the tree (29 percent), followed by toys (28 percent) and cash (27 percent).
Boom in vouchers
This was also the result of a recent survey by RegioPlan, which spoke of a “real boom” in vouchers. 12 percent of total spending now goes to non-trade-related vouchers – for example for a stay at the thermal spa, a visit to the fitness center or for tattoo and beauty treatments.
Black Friday discounts are becoming increasingly important
Since many people have to tighten their belts this year, Deloitte is seeing special promotions such as Black Friday discounts becoming increasingly important in attracting customers. Studies by consumer advocates often show that the discounts are not as high as expected. The discounts also eat up income from retailers. The Christmas business has also shifted forward as a result. In the survey, 34 percent said they would get their Christmas presents in November, 17 percent around Black Friday, which is on November 24th this year.
- Also read: How much Austrians are spending on gifts this year
Overall, the importance of Christmas for retail has decreased over the years. While a decade ago around 4 percent of total annual retail consumer spending was spent on Christmas gifts, this share is now 2.8 percent, according to RegioPlan. For 2023, the location consultant sees Christmas sales at 2 billion euros, which not only includes sales in stationary retail and online retail, but also those made at Christmas markets or in the catering industry at this time.
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