Dec 27, 2008

Lifestyle - UK;Nearly £2bn wasted on unwanted X’mas gifts

LONDON: While most people are yet to get over Christmas fever, some have already started selling off their unwanted Christmas presents online.

According to auction site eBay, nearly £2 billion was wasted on Christmas presents this year in Britain. Owing to the economic slowdown, the website says, consumers have already started auctioning off the gifts that they do not want, in an attempt to raise some money.

If the same pattern repeats itself as last year, thousands of jumpers, socks, saucepans, scarves, and slippers will be sold in the next few days by ungrateful family members.

A study conducted by polling group YouGov revealed that £1.7 billion was spent on unwanted Christmas presents this year, equivalent to £36 per person in Britain.

The survey of eBay customers showed that one in 10 gifts the average Briton received this Christmas would be left unloved under the tree.

"Last year on the 27th of December Brits flocked to eBay to sell an estimated two million unwanted Christmas gifts," the Telegraph quoted Carey Maguire from eBay in the UK as saying.

"This year, with the current economic climate, it's little wonder people will look to make extra cash. As a nation we are sitting on £455 million worth of untapped income from unwanted gifts alone," she said.

Last year, 1,55,000 items were sold on eBay, with the most popular categories for Christmas shoppers being 'clothing, shoes, and accessories', followed by 'video games' and 'cars, parts, and accessories'

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