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Would you rather save cash for a vacation instead of buying gifts?

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winter holidays and finance concept - happy young woman in santa helper hat hiding behind dollar money banknotes over christmas tree lights background
(Ground Picture via Shutterstock)

By Grant Bailey, 72Point via SWNS

Two in five couples would rather put the cash they’d typically spend on gifts for each other - in their vacation savings instead.

A poll of 2,000 adults, who celebrate Christmas, found 51 percent prefer presents which are, or contribute to, experiences rather than material goods.

And with Christmas approaching, more than a third (38 percent) are broaching the subject of having their vacation funds topped up as opposed to getting a gift.

Of the parents surveyed, one in eight (13 percent) revealed their ideal gifts would be more experiences and making memories with their kids rather than receiving a present.

The research was commissioned by Haven Holidays, which has also created a quiz to help to help those stuck whether to give cash, or buy a gift.

Simon Palethorpe, managing director of the vacation park company, said: “Spending time with your loved ones on holiday creates memories that last a lifetime.

"Giving the gift of an experience this Christmas encourages everyone to spend time with one another and could be just the pick-me-up that we need to see us through the winter months.”

The findings come after the discovery that 59 percent have had to cut back on saving for their vacation because of the cost-of-living impact.

Exactly half of respondents have forgone gift-giving in the past to top up their vacation fund with a loved one.

And 77 percent of those in a relationship think topping up the vacation kitty is a less stressful option than trying to find a specific gift for their partner.

Cash or experiences are seen as easier gift-giving options around Christmas time, with 52 percent of those surveyed wishing more of their loved ones asked for these types of gifts, as they struggle to buy the right present.

Food and drink experiences are the most popular type of experiential gift to buy a loved one, followed by spa and wellness days and wildlife experiences.

And 78 percent respondents think that gifting an experience is just as thoughtful as giving a material present.

While 56 percent would be happy to contribute if a loved one asked them for money towards a vacation or experience instead of a Christmas present.

Though, for the sake of flexibility and convenience, a quarter (24 percent) think cash is the best gift to receive from a loved one, with experiences following closely at 21 percent.

This is despite a certain stigma surrounding giving cash as a present, with 53 percent agreeing that it is awkward asking a loved one for money for Christmas.

And only 13 percent would feel comfortable asking for a specific amount, preferring to let the gift-giver decide how much cash to gift them.

The study, conducted via OnePoll, found 54 pe cent of parents would like to receive an experience-style gift from their children said they think experiences offer an opportunity for some much-needed bonding.

And 75 percent cherish the memories they make with their kids while making use of their experiential gift.

Simon Palethorpe, from Haven, added: “A holiday with your partner, family or loved ones is an amazing opportunity to get away together, explore and experience new things.

“And we hope that thousands of Brits will be waking up to an exciting getaway this Christmas.”


1. Food and drink experiences
2. Seaside vacation
3. Wildlife experiences
4. Luxury getaways
5. Spa and wellness days
6. Action and adventure
7. Guided tours around famous landmarks
8. Lessons and courses

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