Published 2014-12-18

For whose sake do you buy new Christmas presents?

One in five Swedes feel pressured to buy many Christmas presents. Blocket has made a video to inspire people to think second-hand instead.

The Christmas consumption rate is expected to rise again this year. A survey carried out for Blocket by HUI Research shows that parents with young children expect to spend SEK 3,612 on Christmas presents this year, which is roughly equivalent to ten Christmas presents under the Christmas tree. This is despite the fact that Swedish children already have an average of more than 500 toys.

“Swedish children own an incredible number of toys, and our survey shows that most children play with only half of them. We could ask ourselves whether we really need to fill our children’s bedroom with even more things,” says Annette Karlberg, PR Manager at Blocket.

Video: parents and children talk second-hand gifts

Loan money to afford presents

According to the same survey, almost one in five Swedes reports feeling pressured into buying many Christmas presents. These expectations can lead parents to buying presents they can’t actually afford. The pressure is perceived as strongest by inhabitants in the big cities, where more than one in five plans to take up a loan in order to afford to buy presents.

At the same time, seven in ten agree that less emphasis on consumption at Christmas would be a good thing.

– Pass on sustainable consumption behaviour

The range of toys for sale on Blocket is widest in December: a sign of resigned parents having a clear-out before replenishing or of people with a need to boost their spending budget?

All the same, only four percent consider buying second-hand toys for Christmas presents. This runs counter to the fact that only a small proportion thought a child would be disappointed with a second-hand present.

“As adults, we need to take our responsibility here and pass on sustainable consumption behavior to the younger generation. And Christmas presents an ideal opportunity for doing that. Resist the pressure and buy second-hand presents. If you do buy new, choose good-quality items that the child can enjoy longer and that can be resold later,” says Annette Karlberg.

Tips on durable presents:

  • An experience, such as tickets for a concert or theater performance, dancing lessons, etc.
  • A donation to an organization working for environmental, aid, or human rights issues – it may even lead to an interesting discussion with older children.
  • Something you made yourself – children are used to it, but adults can also make things for their children.