Do you remember when we were younger and Mother’s Day was about picking some flowers or writing a card for mum? The Easter Bunny would leave you a couple of eggs, and no one really took Valentine’s Day seriously?
This is no longer the case. I don’t know about you, but I feel like calendar events are getting out of control. SwiftMoney have recently drawn attention to this with their #OccassionalSpending fact sheet which has some very interesting information. Did you know that 68% of people surveyed said they feel societal pressure to spend more on these type of events than they would like to?
I’m glad I’m not the only one.
The company also found that women are often the ones who end up feeling most of the pain of this societal pressure. 52% of women said that they either ‘Occasionally’ or ‘Always’ save money for gifts, while 63% of men said they ‘Never’ or ‘Rarely’ save.
40% of people buy flowers for mother’s and father’s day. And for Christmas, food and drink is still the most popular gift, followed by clothes, perfume, and jewellery, and then gadgets.
I think a lot of the pressure to spend more on these calendar events is directly related to social media. We all put our best foot forward on social media, and when everyone is trying to ‘one-up’ each other with the best gifts and experiences, the only winners are the flower companies and large stores.
While gifts used to be a personal thing, now they’re immediately photographed and shared on social media. This means that there’s now an expectation that the gifts get better every year. Now, the Easter Bunny brings more eggs than any kid could eat. Valentine’s Day is more about showing the world how much you’re loved than actually enjoying the day with your loved one. And even Grandads and Grandmothers are now given gifts for Mother’s and Father’s day.
Personally, as someone who lives overseas, my gifts tend to be things that can easily be delivered. These include flowers, groceries, and gift vouchers, most of which can be ordered online. I even discovered you can now get Happy Mother’s Day cards online. As for Christmas, I’ll be spending it at home this year, so I’ll definitely be saving more money than usual so I can bring gifts with me.
The worst feeling is when you start January off and you’re still in debt from all your Christmas expenses. Since I don’t want this to be my reality, I’ve already begun tucking some money away in my savings accounts. For things like birthdays, mother’s day, and Easter, I generally don’t bother saving since I typically don’t spend enough to make a massive dent in my budget.
Have you noticed that you’re also spending more on calendar events these days? Or have you managed to keep your spending the same over the years? Let me know in the comments below.