15th December 2022

One in three Brits “go green” this Christmas to manage cost-of-living crisis


  • One in three (35%) UK adults are more likely to celebrate a sustainable Christmas this year due to rising energy and living costs
  • A quarter of people (25%) plan to use less fairy lights to help reduce energy bills over the festive season
  • One in eight (13%) will gift secondhand presents this Christmas, potentially benefitting the planet and their pockets
  • One in four (25%) people will not send Christmas cards this year


15 December 2022 – Decorating with fairy lightsposting Christmas cards, and playing Secret Santa are quintessential festive traditions for many Brits, but a desire to keep the cost of Christmas in check could mean these traditions are temporarily pared back. 


New research from F&C Investment Trust1 reveals that one in three (35%) adults will be celebrating a more sustainable Christmas this year, prompted by the cost of living and energy crisis.


Christmas presents get a sustainable makeover


Gift giving is unsuprisingly the most expensive aspect of Christmas, so it’s understandable that this is where UK households are making the most changes – over a third of UK adults (35%) plan to give fewer presents this year, while one in four (25%) will be asking for fewer gifts to help loved ones manage their money over the festive period.


The gifts we unwrap could also be different this year. One in five (18%) UK adults plan to gift money instead of presents, 13% of UK adults will be shopping for second-hand presents, while 9% of us will be opting to make a charitable donation on a loved ones’ behalf. Meanwhile, one in ten (13%) plan to skip Secret Santa altogether.


Deck the halls, but make it sustainable


Christmas decorations are also set for a sustainable makeover. Almost a third (31%) of UK adults will opt for a fake tree as opposed to a real tree, a more cost effective and sustainable option. Meanwhile the soaring cost of electricity will prompt a quarter (25%) of UK adults to hang fewer Christmas lights.


There could also be fewer Christmas cards to put on display this year, but households shouldn’t take it personally, with one in four (25%) UK adults choosing to not send Christmas cards this year, saving paper and money in the process.


Brits are expecting a modest Christmas lunch this year, with one quarter (23%) of UK adults planning to buy less food for Christmas day. A further 22% of Brits are planning to eat less meat over the festive period.


Younger generations and Londoners lead the charge


Over half (55%) of adults aged 18-34 years old are set to have a more sustainable Christmas this year, prompted by cost-of-living pressures and rising energy prices. This compares with just 26% of those aged 55 and over.


Meanwhile London will be home to the greenest Christmas, with one in two (50%) Londoners opting for a more sustainable festive season.


Beatrice Hollond, Chairman of the Board for F&C Investment Trust, commented:


“The festive period can often be a time of indulgence. However, with living costs on the rise, it’s understandable that many of us are choosing to make conscious changes to save money, and curb waste this Christmas.


“With adults expecting to feel the pinch this winter, it comes as no surprise that many people are planning to cut back or gift money in a bid to be less wasteful this year. For individuals embracing a “greener” approach this Yuletide and gifting money to loved ones, especially grandchildren, it’s worth considering the benefits of investing your money in funds with a commitment to sustainability to maximise your positive environmental impact for many Christmases to come.”





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