Generous Scots urged to tick insurance boxes over Christmas

Not only is the average Brit now halfway through their Christmas shopping, but Scots are beating their tight-fisted stereotype, according to new research by the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII), which is urging shoppers to make sure they’re insured.
British consumers are exactly halfway through their Christmas shopping today (Friday, November 27) and Scots are the second most generous when it comes to gift-giving, says the organisation, which is offering free insurance advice this festive season.
According to the CII, the average Brit started their Christmas shopping on November 2 – leaving more than seven weeks to get everything in before the big day.
It says this means they are now exactly halfway through their festive spending, with just over three weeks to go.
CII research shows that, when it comes to planning and preparation, women tend to start their shop in October – allowing at least two months to get the gifts in.
Men say they only need a few weeks – typically starting on November 12, with a small minority leaving it till Christmas Eve.
CII says the difference between genders could be down to finding time to fit the shopping in as men spend just 10 hours shopping, while women need more than 16 hours – 60% more than their male counterparts.
Last year, the average Brit spent £333 on Christmas presents – equating to £17 billion across the nation as a whole.
Those in the North East are the most generous – spending £396 each on Christmas gifts – closely followed by Scots, who spend £375 each. – challenging the national stereotype.
Those in Yorkshire and the Humber appear to be the least generous, spending just £267 each on presents – nearly 20% less than the national average.
CII says the largest proportion of this spend will go on hi tech gadgets, such as smartphones, tablets and computer gaming equipment.
It claims four in 10 (38%) Brits are planning to buy some sort of gadget as a Christmas present, while other popular gifts include books, toiletries – such as designer perfume – clothes and toys.
And CII says the average household is worth a lot more in the run up to Christmas when gifts and festive food and drink are taken into account.
It’s also stressing that things can still go wrong and it’s not uncommon for pipes to burst in the run up to Christmas, or for an opportune burglar to strike while the presents are under the tree.
It says that, because of this, most quality home insurance policies will automatically increase the amount of contents cover they give consumers for 30 days before and after Christmas.
CII says this extra cover can make a real difference at this time of year and give peace of mind when preparing for the festive season.
To guide consumers through the world of insurance, CII has created ‘Ciindy’, an online character to help people with questions they have about insurance.
David Ross, director of communications at the CII, said: “Whether you are a lavish spender or a penny-pinching Scrooge at Christmas, a year-long planner or a last-minute trolley dash-er, you don’t want to find your Christmas ruined at the last minute. It pays to buy the right home insurance cover for your needs to give you peace of mind should the worst happen.”
For insurance advice and free online guides, click here. www.AskCiindy.com,
Christmas gift spend by region*
Region
Spend on Christmas gifts
North East
£396
Scotland
£375
London
£359
North West
£340
South East
£328
South West
£327
Wales
£324
East Midlands
£318
East/East Anglia
£304
West Midlands
£303
Yorkshire and the Humber
£267
*Table excludes Northern Ireland as the sample was too small to be statistically representative.

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