Credit card Christmas: 21% of Brits will put it on the plastic, says Abbey

10 December 2008 / by Rebecca Sargent
One in five Brits are planning to avoid cutbacks by putting all their Christmas shopping on a credit card this year, new research from Abbey has revealed.

According to the research, the news comes despite the fact that more than half of Brits intend to make cutbacks this Christmas. The Abbey Credit Cards study found that 52 per cent of Brits will spend less on presents, while 34 per cent said they won't be buying any gifts at all this Christmas.

Commenting, Callum Gibson of Abbey Credit Cards said: "With recession looming this Christmas it's no surprise that many people are tightening their purse strings. However, sometimes it's not about cutting back, but just making sure you shop savvy."

And, new research from MoneyExpert.com suggests that Brits are trying to be shop savvy, as it showed an increase in demand for interest-free credit cards. The website saw a 15.6 per cent increase in the number of applications for credit cards offering interest free periods on purchases compared to the same time last year.

Commenting, Sean Gardner, director of MoneyExpert.com said: "The spending habit hasn't died yet and the price-cutting frenzy on the high street shows that there are plenty of bargains out there with big name stores offering massive reductions.

"It can make financial sense to cash in by taking out interest-free cards and then paying them off. But Christmas tends not to be a time for sensible financial planning and the UK economy has been detached from reality for quite a while now."

However, new research from Sainsbury's Finance contradicts this. According to its study, early Christmas shopping has hit £7.21billion as 'savvy shoppers' spread the cost of Christmas.

Head of Sainsbury's Credit Cards, Donald Macleod said: "Christmas is one of the most expensive times of the year so it's encouraging to see that a large number of shoppers are spreading the cost over a longer period of time, maybe utilising a couple of pay packets rather than just their December one, which seems particularly prudent this year given the current economic climate."

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