Britain is becoming an increasingly generous nation, according to new research which shows consumers are anticipating a 7% increase in gifting spend.
In 2014, the average Briton spent £370.67 on gifting occasions but, according to the One4all Gift Card Gifting Index, the average UK adult is now predicting a spend £397.37 typically on presents outside of birthdays and Christmas.
The news comes just days after the Office of National Statistics (ONS) measured a 4.5% increase in household disposable income on an annual basis in the first quarter of the year. GfK also revealed spending on big ticket items is to surge as its measure of confidence hit a 15 year high.
The study by One4all, the Post Office gift card, quizzed 1,732 UK adults on their gifting habits, revealing the true value of panic-bought presents.
It found £17.5 billion is wasted every year on gifts that many are not confident the recipient will like, with 85% of gifts bought throughout the year are given uncertainly.
Housewarmings are taking over from christenings and engagements as the fifth most popular UK gifting occasion not including Christmas and birthdays, according to the holidays league table, suggesting house purchases are being celebrated with more flair, as many struggle to get onto the housing ladder.
Mother’s Day won out as the most popular gifting occasion in the UK, stealing 7% more of the vote than Father’s Day, suggesting at heart, we are a nation of mummy’s girls.
Declan Byrne, managing director at One4all, the Post Office Gift Card, said: “It’s interesting to see that consumer confidence is growing to the extent that we are not only investing in ourselves, but other people. It’s fantastic that people are starting to feel like they can spend again, and even better to see that being played out in our generosity as a nation.
“That said, it does seem like, as a nation, many are selecting gifts that may not be right for the recipient: 85% of gifts being bought uncertainly is an astonishing figure, and suggests that, we either need to be buying gifts which offer more choice or allow for a wider range of tastes, or perhaps worry less about finding that ‘perfect’ gift, to take the pressure off and allow us to make more instinctive, natural gift decisions.”
While the research indicates we are becoming more generous with the amount we lay down on gifts, almost 1 in 2 people feel they are the great ungifted, buying more gifts for others than they receive.
Meanwhile, Edinburgh, Nottingham and Oxford were found to be the most stingy, spending just £266, £285 and £283 respectively.
The One4all Gift Card is available to buy from Post Offices nationwide and online at www.one4allgiftcard.co.uk, and can be spent in more than 22,000 stores across the UK.