A new survey has revealed that over six in 10 (62%) UK shoppers plan to spend more than last year on the festive season.
However, a significant number plan to wait until non-essential retail is allowed to reopen before they start spending.
Consumer and location intelligence specialist CACI conducted a survey which said that four in 10 (40%) are intentionally delaying their Christmas shopping until stores reopen in early December.
This, CACI said, will result in around £3 billion of consumers’ money being held back until lockdown is lifted on 3 December.
This is something that experts have warned against, as mass crowds of shoppers in the lead-up to 25 December could increase the spread of COVID-19.
The British Retail Consortium (BRC) even put out a campaign, advising “Shop early, start wrapping, enjoy Christmas”.
Alex McCulloch, director of CACI, said: “Christmas is going to be an even more crucial period this year, as retailers will be looking to make up significant consumer spend they have lost throughout the pandemic.
“Our latest consumer survey is evidence there is still hope of a solid spending period for Christmas shopping, but it is key bricks-and-mortar retail can re-open at the beginning of December.
“That said, it also highlights just how quickly consumers are changing their habits.
“Back in March, CACI found consumer trends moved forward five years in the space of two weeks, and this survey highlights the implications of such huge shifts in behaviour.
“Those retailers able to be flexible and adapt will benefit, leaving those that cannot or will not change behind.”
Read more about the BRC’s Christmas “Shop early…” campaign below: