'Experiences' are replacing physical Christmas presents

Christmas present ideas

When we think about Christmas presents, unfortunately for some of us, what comes to mind will be the pair of socks or the deodorant set most men tend to receive every year. However, it seems like that might soon be a thing of the past.

A new study has revealed that more people are exploring opportunities to get out and try something new, avoiding the routine of getting 'the same old thing' every Christmas. The poll of 2,000 UK adults, commissioned by Barclaycard, found that experiences are becoming increasingly popular and are considered to "mean more" than something hurriedly bought from stores.

In the UK, it is estimated that experiences will take up around £1.6 billion of festive spends this year - thanks to treats such as comedy show tickets, concert tickets and 'red letter day' vouchers. Brits are also planning on spending an average of £129 each on experience-based gifts, a rise of 115 per cent from a year ago.

Unsurprisingly for today's social media age, 13 per cent of adults polled  admitted that they consider whether the gift they are purchasing will create exciting content for social media channel, with millennials aged 25-30 more conscious of this than any other age group.

One in five gift-buyers believe making memories is the most important thing when picking a Christmas present, and 17 per cent want to make sure the recipient has something to look forward to.
According to spokesman Daniel Mathieson, “The emotion and excitement of giving and receiving an experience is something money can’t buy, particularly when it comes to activities that can be shared. What’s truly heart-warming though, is that people want to spend more time with their friends and family and are choosing presents they can enjoyed together while also providing something to look forward once the festive season is over.”


  1. Theatre / comedy tickets
  2. Spa / beauty treatments
  3. Concert tickets
  4. Meals out & culinary courses
  5. Red letter day vouchers
  6. Tourist attractions
  7. Sporting event tickets e.g. rugby/football match
  8. Adventure trips e.g. skydiving, rock climbing
  9. Cultural experiences, e.g. art gallery
  10. Historical experiences, e.g. visiting National Trust sites

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