Londoners drink the most at Christmas and New Year, survey finds

In a new survey on eating, drinking and spending over Christmas and New Year, more than 5,000 respondents from across the UK told Virgin Wines about their existing habits and future festive plans.

There were several areas in which Londoners stood out from the pack:

  • 50% of Londoners stated that they drink ‘a lot of alcohol’ on Christmas day, compared to a national average of 35%.

  • 48% stated that they drink ‘a lot of alcohol’ on New Year’s Eve, compared to a national average of 32%.

  • Londoners are less likely to spend Christmas with family than people in other parts of the UK. 84.6% of London’s inhabitants typically spend Christmas with their family, compared to the national average of 92%.

  • Just under 11% of Londoners typically spend Christmas with friends, while almost 4% spend it alone, compared to national averages of 4.3% and 2.3% respectively.

Unsurprisingly for the most expensive city in the country, it’s London that spends the most on food, with 23% of survey respondents in London spending more than £300 on food for Christmas and New Year. Across the rest of the UK, only 17% of people spend this much.

When it comes to Dry January, England on the whole showed less willing than its neighbours in many respects. 21% of English adults said they’d give up on Dry January altogether if they slipped up and had a drink at some point, while 20% said they wouldn’t manage a full week sober in the first place.

The only people less enthusiastic were the Scottish, of whom 24% said they wouldn’t manage a whole week sober in January, and 20% said that they’d pretend they’d completed Dry January even if they hadn’t.

Respondents were also asked about their most hated festive food and drinks, non-alcoholic wines, beers and spirits, and where they stand on ‘Pimp my Prosecco’ drink decoration bars at Christmas and New Year’s Eve parties.

  • Londoners were much more enthusiastic about bedazzling their drinks than Northerners, with 25% of Londoners calling prosecco decoration stations a ‘must-have’ compared to only 12% of those in Yorkshire and other parts of the North.

  • Respondents in London also hated eggnog and mulled wine much less than other parts of the UK. On average, 44% of people hate eggnog and 14% hate mulled wine: only 27% and 7% of London respondents, respectively, feel the same.

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