£236: The present cost of being a grandparent this Christmas

Posted by Olderiswiser Editorial

Grandparents are set to spend an average of £236 on their grandchildren’s Christmas presents, according to a new study by Co-op.*

The cost of Christmas for Grandparents

Despite a fifth (19%) of grandparents living over 100 miles away from their grandchildren, a tenth (9%) having grandchildren overseas and a further tenth (7%) unsure of when they last saw their grandkids, the study reveals UK grandparents are set to splash the cash this Christmas.

Highlighting the increasing generosity of UK grandparents, on average, grandparents are spending £59 on each of their grandchildren, and with the average grandparent having four grandchildren, this equates to £236 being spent this Christmas.

Furthermore, a fifth (15%) of grandparents say they’re planning to spend even more on their grandchildren than they did last year and a tenth (10%) are spending over £100 on each of their grandchildren.

When delving further into why this is the case, a third (32%) of grandparents say they have more disposable income this year and a fifth (16%) say that having seen their grandchildren more this year has made them more generous.

  • 1 in 7 are having to spend more as their grandchildren want something that’s more expensive
  • 1 in 8 are doing it because they’re not sure how long they have left with their grandchildren
  • 1 in 12 say they’ll spend more because they’ve helped to look after them this year
  • 1 in 14 say they couldn’t afford to spend much last year so they’re making up for it this year

Over a tenth (14%) of grandparents spend different amounts on their grandchildren, depending on how often they see them, their age and how easy they are to shop for.

When looking into how buying Christmas presents makes grandparents feel, half (49%) said it makes them happy, a third (35%) say they enjoy spoiling their grandchildren and a fifth (21%) say it makes them feel like they’re a bigger part of their lives.

However, over a tenth (14%) struggle to buy for their grandchildren as they already have so much.

  • 1 in 9 say it upsets them as they can’t give them much
  • 1 in 16 worry their grandchildren and great grandchildren won’t like the presents they choose for them
  • 1 in 20 worry about spoiling them

James Antoniou, Head of Wills at Co-op Legal Services said: “It’s good to see that grandparents are becoming increasingly generous towards their grandchildren.

“The generosity of grandparents is something we’re seeing more of throughout the year, not just at Christmas, as more grandparents, when putting their wills in place, are choosing to skip a generation by leaving a larger share of their property and other assets to their grandchildren instead of their own children.” 

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