Maeve Dorman, VP Merchant Operations, PayPal EMEA

With Christmas fast approaching, PayPal’s Gifting and Giving 2021 study – involving over 1,000 Irish consumers – shows that Irish people are planning to spend 33 per cent more2 on Christmas gifts this year.

Compared to Christmas 2020, where the average spend on Christmas gifts was €541, those polled in Ireland plan to spend an average of €721 on gifts this Christmas. As for the most generous counties, these were revealed as Offaly (€1,004), Kildare (€928), Sligo (€890), Tipperary (€888) and Clare (€843).

 No Late Late Shoppers

It seems the majority of respondents aren’t hanging around either when it comes to ticking items off their list, with 32 per cent having a head start and finished with their Christmas shopping by the end of November. Furthermore, a quarter (25%) expect to have theirs completed by this first week in December.

However, a fifth (20%) of Christmas shoppers did admit that they usually leave their shopping until the last minute. Men are more prone to this than women with 30 per cent of male respondents leaving shopping to the last minute, compared to just 17 per cent of female respondents.

When it comes to how people are shopping, over half (53%) of Irish consumers Christmas shopping this year are doing more of their Christmas shopping online in order to avoid crowds. Meanwhile some 37 per cent plan to head into stores during quiet times for the same reason and almost a fifth (17%) intend to buy fewer physical gifts as a result of COVID-19.

Paypal

Christmas with a COVID twist

The pandemic is causing some consumers a concern with 31 per cent worried about presents not arriving in time due to supply chain issues. Another main worry is that lockdown restrictions could prevent people from celebrating with family and friends in person (52%).

On a more positive note, 38 per cent of Irish people agree that it feels like Christmas will be back to normal this year and 56% of Christmas hosts are not anxious about hosting people over the holidays. Although, more than half (57%) of Christmas hosts said they will only invite double vaccinated guests for celebrations at home.

The Gift of Giving

The PayPal study also revealed that more than a third of Irish people (38%) say the pandemic has caused them to be more generous with their time and money in relation to charitable causes, with 92 per cent saying they donated to charity by giving money, donating items, offering raffle prizes or giving to a food bank.

According to the research, Irish people donate an average of €87 a year to causes dear to their hearts. Based on donations during the average year, the most generous givers are from Carlow (€178), Wicklow (€106), Sligo (€103), Meath (€102) and Wexford (€100).

Speaking about the findings, Maeve Dorman, Senior Vice President at PayPal, commented: “It’s that magical time of the year when people want to give back to their loved ones and their communities. After all, being generous to others makes us feel good and – something that is ever more important these days – helps us stay connected. Irish people in particular are known for their generosity and thoughtfulness, so it’s not surprising that they are going above and beyond this year when it comes to buying gifts for family and friends, and making donations to causes they care about.”

“At PayPal, we want to make it easy to support charities this Christmas and beyond, which is where ‘Give At Checkout’ comes in. It enables people to add a micro donation when they shop online with PayPal.”

‘Give at Checkout’ allows people to make micro donations of €1 when they do their Christmas shopping online with PayPal by selecting their favourite charity on this website or via the mobile app.

By Jim O Brien/CEO

CEO and expert in transport and Mobile tech. A fan 20 years, mobile consultant, Nokia Mobile expert, Former Nokia/Microsoft VIP,Multiple forum tech supporter with worldwide top ranking,Working in the background on mobile technology, Weekly radio show, Featured on the RTE consumer show, Cavan TV and on TRT WORLD. Award winning Technology reviewer and blogger. Security and logisitcs Professional.