Christmas light costs just £1.34 for the entire month of December
Thursday 16th November 2023
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Thursday 16th November 2023
Our research has found that while the majority of us intend to reduce the number of Christmas lights we adorn our homes with this year due to the ongoing cost of living crisis, it may not be the energy zapping endeavour we think it is, with the average cost of decking the halls throughout the entire month of December coming in at just £1.34 for the entire month for the average British home.
We have analysed the current cost of electricity across each region of Britain and the average monthly household spend, before looking at the usage required for a variety of luminous Christmas decorations from fairy lights to Santas, reindeers to stars. We then looked at how much the average household would be set to spend from putting up their Christmas lights throughout the full month of December.
We surveyed over 1,000 households and found that 32% of us are planning not to put up Christmas lights outside this year due to the higher cost of living and with their energy bills in mind. A further 16% only plan to put up a small selection in order to cut costs.
What’s more, 11% don’t plan to put up lights inside the home, such as their Christmas tree, with a further 19% also planning to put up a smaller selection.
Of those that are still putting up lights, 42% said they will leave them on for a shorter amount of time.
But do they need to cut back this Christmas?
Our research looked at five external Christmas light decorations*, as well as indoor fairy lights for the Christmas tree.
It shows that, when it comes to the most expensive to run, it’s fairy lights that rank top. The external fairy lights come in at 7 watts, while the internal Christmas tree lights come in at 7.2 watts.
This means they use 0.007kW and 0.0072kW of electricity respectively. However, with the average British home paying a current rate of 27.35p per kWh, the cost of running external fairy lights for 6 hours per day comes in at £0.0115 per hour, while keeping your Christmas tree illuminated for 8 hours a day comes in at a cost of just £0.0158 per hour.
In total, illuminating the outside of your home with the five Christmas decorations* we analysed for 6 hours in a day, plus keeping your Christmas tree lights on for 8 hours in a day, comes in at a total cost of just £0.04 for the average British home. This means you can expect to pay just £1.34 in Christmas light energy costs over the full month of December.
With the average electricity bill for British homes currently sitting at £83 including the standing charge, this means you can expect to pay £84.34 for the month of December in order to get into the festive spirit - an increase of just 1.6%.
This cost does vary by region, however, the difference is marginal.
For example, in London it will cost you the most, coming in at a total of £1.39 in energy costs for the whole month of December, with North Wales and the Mersey (£1.38), the South East (£1.38) and Eastern (£1.37) regions also amongst the most expensive based on current electricity prices.
Yorkshire the Northern region are home to the lowest bills, where Christmas light costs total just £1.30 for the entire month of December.
To put the cost of Christmas lights into perspective, it would cost you £2.03 in electricity for the month of December if you were to leave your TV on standby, while leaving a games console on standby will also cost you the same on your energy bill.
Bradley Post, MD of RIFT, commented:
“While inflation may be easing, we’re facing another Christmas of higher costs and many households will be thinking about where they can make cutbacks in order to make ends meet.
One seemingly obvious option is to reduce the number of energy zapping Christmas lights we adorn our homes with, but as our research shows, they may not be as costly as we think.
To run a good selection of outdoor decorations for as long as six hours a day, plus our Christmas tree lights for eight hours, comes in at just £1.34 for the entire month.
In contrast, leaving your TV on standby throughout December would cost you more and so if you are in two minds about putting up your lights this year, simply turning off your TV could cover the additional cost.”
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