Bargain reports and analytics


PicodiDecember 13, 2018

How Singaporeans prepare for Christmas

Christmas time is not just family reunions and decorating the Christmas tree. The last few weeks of the year are also a big burden on our home budget since we have to accommodate additional expenses, such as Christmas gifts, food and sometimes even elegant outfits.

Picodi Analysis Team decided to find out what Christmas expenses look like, what gifts Singaporeans usually buy and how much it costs to put food on the Christmas table. From our report you will also learn what kind of gifts are the most desirable ones and which are a bad idea.

What kind of gifts Singaporeans buy for Christmas?

During Christmas we want to make our family and friends happy. 45% of respondents buy presents for their relatives. For 63% it’s a good opportunity to give their friends a gift. Our survey results show that 36% of Singaporeans decide to buy gifts also for their colleagues. And 6% of respondents declare that they help charities or make Christmas donations.

What gifts do we usually buy? According to our respondents, the most popular categories are accessories, e.g. ties or scarves (35%), toys (33%), sweets (25%), clothes (25%) and gift cards (23%).

An interesting fact is that most Singaporeans (57%) leave Christmas gifts until the last moment—December. Christmas ornaments in shopping malls and special sales like famous Black Friday ones manage to convince 31% of Singaporeans to buy Christmas gifts earlier, in November. Only 12% shop for gifts in advance (9% in September and October and 3% before September).

When choosing Christmas gifts almost half of Singaporeans (46%) try to find out what the receiver would like to get. Fewer people buy gifts on a hunch (42%) and only 12% ask directly.

As the survey results show, the most desirable gifts of 2018 are money (38%), electronics (33%), gift cards (32%) and accessories (31%). Sweets (36%), toys (35%), alcohol (34%) and underwear (28%) were voted the least desirable gifts to receive. We spend 157 SGD on average on gifts.

How much money Singaporeans spend on Christmas food?

3 out of 4 Singaporeans spend Christmas at home. 11% visit their friends and 14% go abroad for Christmas.

Singaporeans still buy Christmas food the traditional way: 34% shop in brick and mortar stores and markets. Only 12% place their orders online and the more than half (54%) use both options when shopping. An average Singaporean spends 196 SGD on Christmas food.

Singaporeans' Christmas outfits

Is Christmas a reason to wear spick-and-span clothes? Half of our respondents (54%) declare that they do not need new clothes and prefer those they already have in their closet. 30% of Singaporeans say that they buy brand new clothes and 16% content themselves with new accessories like jewellery or ties.

Christmas spendings all over the world

460 SGD is spent on average in Singapore during Christmas. Most of the money is spent on food (43%), gifts make 31% of that sum and Christmas outfits—23%.

Besides Singapore we conducted the same survey among other nations. The result is a comparison of Christmas spending for 34 countries of Europe, Asia, America, Africa and Australia where Christmas or its equivalent is celebrated over a similar time period.

Singapore placed 18th on our list with 460 SGD which converted into dollars amounts to $334. Czechs are leading with $527 spent on gifts, food and clothes. For comparison, an average Filipino spends $255 and an average Hongkonger spends $372.


We conducted the surveys in early December 2018 among more than 13,000 people from Europe, Asia, America, Africa and Australia in countries where Christmas or its equivalent is celebrated during the winter period. In Singapore, 414 people took part in the survey. For currency conversion we used the average exchange rate for November 2018.

Public Use

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