1 in 5 South Africans are on their own Christmas list - survey

If you haven't yet budgeted to buy yourself a Christmas present this year, you might be behind the times. Some 20% of South Africans are doing just that, a recent survey has found.

Research by short-term lender Wonga, conducted among 7 000 people between the ages of 18 and 65, found that one in five South Africans had put themselves on their Christmas shopping list.

The spirit of giving isn't quite dead, however: 70% of respondents plan on buying Christmas presents this season, and of those who are buying, 98% plan to buy for family, and 25% plan to buy for friends.

South Africans are set to spend over R200bn this festive season, with an average of nearly R6 000 each, the survey found.

Of this, R1 232 will go to gifts.

Where we'll shop

Despite the rise of internet shopping, traditional brick-and-mortar shops remain the favoured destination for Christmas shopping this year, Wonga said.

Some 81% of respondents plan on braving the crowds at their local mall, as opposed to only 12% who plan to shop online for gifts.  

But those who live in mortal dread of malls at the festive season can heave a sigh of relief: there's no need to buy a present at all. In terms of the gifts most people are hoping to see in their stocking this year, money tops the list at 32%, followed by vouchers at 27%.

"Financial gifts such as vouchers can alleviate some of the pressure on stretched budgets this December, as well as giving recipients the flexibility to buy something they really need," said Taryn Schmidt, Chief Marketing Officer at Wonga SA.

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