Christmas is coming, and if you celebrate it, you’ve likely started shopping for gifts already. The holidays can get expensive, especially when you have a significant other, and while it’s the thought that counts, there’s a certain expectation when it comes to giving and receiving. In fact, a new study by online sales site Decluttr discovered that most people expected their partners to shell out a significant amount of cash—here’s what you need to know.
We tend to spend way more than we can afford. According to research, a whopping 66 million Americans—that’s about one in four—will end up in debt this year as a result of overspending on Christmas gifts. That’s insane! Whether it’s because we want to spoil our loved ones or we feel pressured to keep up with the Joneses, so to speak, this is a serious problem.
The average American will spend roughly $122.46 on our partners this year. That’s a 40% increase on what your partner actually expects you to spend, which is $87.88 on average. Men are the most guilty of overspending and tend to spend more than 84% of what their partner expects. Pretty intense!
In total, we tend to spend around $600 on gifts for everyone we buy for. On average, that’s 50% more than we actually expect our loved ones including family and friends to spend on us, and it totals up to a whopping $39 billion for millennials alone. It’s great that we’re all so giving when it comes to the holiday spirit, but considering how many of us can’t afford it, maybe it’s not so great after all.
We’ll go to great lengths to get extra Christmas cash. If we haven’t been saving all year or we haven’t managed to save as much as we’d like to spend on gifts, two in five of us will seek out additional means of income to make up the difference, according to the survey. Since nearly half (47%) of millennials admit to feeling stressed about gift buying, that makes sense. Still, it’s a bit depressing—the holidays aren’t all about gifts!
We don’t like cheapskates. Roughly 30% of people say that $25 is the minimum amount someone should be spending on a gift. That’s great if you have that kind of cash to spend, but what about homemade gifts which have low costs but greater sentimental value? Hopefully we’re not holding people to such an arbitrary number.
There are some gifts we just don’t want to receive. Perhaps surprisingly, both male and female survey participants admitted that they’re least interested in receiving video games and sporting equipment this Christmas. They also shared some of the worst gifts they’ve ever received, which included insane things like stretch mark cream, a used fondue machine, mayonnaise, and denture adhesive. Yikes. Maybe we should be grateful for what ends up under our trees.
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