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John Lewis reveals how the UK is planning for Christmas this year

Retailer says its Christmas shop sales are up 63% on last year as consumers start early; toy sales already up 43% in stores.

John Lewis has shone a light on how the UK is planning for Christmas this year – with strong sales through its Christmas shop showing that consumers are starting their shopping early.

A new survey conducted by OnePoll on behalf of the retailer has revealed that more people are shopping for gifts early and that 60% of people will complete their Christmas shopping by the end of November.

Almost a third of those surveyed said they were planning Christmas earlier than usual this year. Of those, 74% said they are shopping for gifts early, 39% are already stocking up on food gifts and a third of people plan on putting up their decorations earlier than usual.

John Lewis Christmas shop sales are up 63% on last year, with its virtual Christmas shop is one of the most viewed pages on johnlewis.com. Advent calendars are up 48% this year, while Christmas baking kits are up 65% with customers already looking for festive activities to do.

However, a visit to the high street is still being planned – nearly a quarter of people (24%) said the have already visited shops for Christmas shopping and will do so again in the coming weeks.

Notably, toy sales are already up 43% at John Lewis.

54% said they hadn’t visited the shops yet but still planned to.

And when it comes to cards and decorations, people are getting into the Christmas spirit here, too.

More than 70% said they intended to post more or the same amount of Christmas cards this year compared to 51% who said they intended to send more or the same amount of virtual greetings.

Card sales at John Lewis have risen 69% compared to last year, with online card sales up over 200%.

Meanwhile, sales of Christmas trees and boxed baubles are up 128% and 107% respectively compared to last year.

“It will undoubtedly be a Christmas like never before and one we know will be very challenging for many, but there seems to be a determination to end the year on a positive note and indulge in the festive spirit earlier than ever,” said Dan Cooper, Christmas buyer for John Lewis. “People are giving more thought to how they stay in touch with friends and family and how they can make someone’s Christmas that bit more special.

“Shoppers are understandably wanting to capture as much of the traditional experience and celebrations as possible. And for many that includes a trip to the shops so we have put as much effort into ensuring our customers know they can shop easily and safely for everything they need under one roof this Christmas as we have the inspiring gifts they can choose from.”

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