Nearly 50% of Britons relied on credit cards to fund Christmas

Almost 50 per cent of people in the UK used credit to pay for some of their Christmas presents.

This is according to research carried out by Which?…

Almost 50 per cent of people in the UK used credit to pay for some of their Christmas presents.

This is according to research carried out by Which? and it highlights how too many individuals are still operating with a buy now, pay later mindset. Some 46 per cent of respondents said they used a combination of credit cards, overdrafts, store cards or payday loans to get them through the festive period.

On top of this, 36 per cent fell back on their savings in an effort to cover the cost of Christmas, taking out an average of £380. If people find they have overstretched themselves, then it may be the perfect time to seek a debt solution.

Provided individuals owe £1,500 to more than one creditor, then a debt management plan could be the answer to their problems. It will allow consumers to reduce their monthly repayments and freeze any further interest.

Which? executive director Richard Lloyd said of the findings: "Most of us like to splash out on family and friends at this time of year so the news that millions of people have drastically cut back on Christmas spending or taken out loans to cover Christmas costs shows just how squeezed household budgets are right now. It also shows how far we are from a consumer spending-led economic recovery."

The research also discovered that 61 per cent of those questioned felt 2012 was tougher financially than the previous year, while 92 per cent felt under pressure to spend more money than they had during the festive period.

Worryingly, nearly one-quarter (22 per cent) said they would not have been able to afford the expense associated with Christmas if they did not resort to credit cards or overdrafts. This highlights how precarious a position many people are finding themselves in as they struggle to get by.

By Amy White

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