Brits spend almost five years of their life prepping for Christmas Day

Adults who celebrate Christmas will spend almost five years preparing for the big day over their lifetime.

Research has revealed a total of 34 hours is spent untangling lights, more than two days decorating the tree, and 164 weeks – just over three years – cleaning and tidying before guests arrive, to ensure the festive season goes to plan.

The poll of 2,000 adults, who participate in Yuletide, also found they will spend the equivalent of a day and a half picking or vacuuming up pine leaves from real trees over a period of 63 years.

And almost one-and-a-half days will be dedicated to re-decorating the tree if children or other household members have done a poor job of it – with a confident 22% claiming their decorating skills are “amazing”.

But one of the most time-consuming festive tasks is planning for the Christmas dinner, which takes up almost two-and-a-half years.

An average of 41 hours will also be spent on “unexpected” challenges, such as failed cookers and hosting for last-minute guests.

The research, which was commissioned by B&Q, also found an hour is spent packing away decorations post-festivities each year – with 54% describing their technique as “neat and tidy”, while one in six (16%) admit theirs is haphazard.

When asked about making this time of year easier, the things people would most like hacks for were revealed as wrapping unusual shaped presents (27%), and how to untangle tree lights (14%).

Mairi Devlin at B&Q, said: “Christmas time is a special and rewarding time for all those involved, and provides the perfect excuse to host loved ones in the home for festive fun.

“There’s nothing more important than quality time with friends and family and creating new traditions, such as buying a real tree each year and adding new decorations as each year passes.”

The study also found 60% find the festive season stressful, and almost half (45%) wish there were ways to help make it less so.

A further 13% would like to learn hacks for packing away Christmas decorations, while 12% hope to find a shortcut for fitting lots of people around the dinner table when there aren’t enough chairs.

Among the biggest challenges were cooking everything at the same time (28%) and, similarly, fitting all food in the oven (22%).

Packing and unpacking decorations were found to be equally challenging (12%), while a tenth find it tricky keeping real trees alive.

Due to the cost-of-living crisis, two in five (41%) of those polled, via OnePoll, think Christmas will be more stressful this year compared to last.

But looking at the positives, the nation’s favourite things about the festive season were revealed as spending time with family and friends (44%), the food and drink (41%), and giving presents (34%).

And despite the challenges, 17% enjoy decorating their home, while 15% like hosting for loved ones.

Mairi Devlin added: “We want to offer convenient ways to tackle the Christmas checklist, so that it helps reduce the time spent on preparations in the run up to the special day.

“We hope people can experience a smooth and joyous festive period this year – and we’re here to help make that happen.”

For more tips and advice, visit here.

B&Q’S TOP TIPS FOR A SMOOTH-SAILING CHRISTMAS…

  1. Create a table extender with large pieces of MDF to fit everyone at the table for Christmas dinner
  2. Make sure your front door is spotless before hanging the Christmas wreath, to avoid drawing attention to any scuff marks
  3. Use a pencil to help tease out the knots in the Christmas lights
  4. Bleed your radiators to make sure the heating works efficiently before guests arrive
  5. Set up a dedicated workstation to wrap your presents and allow enough elbow room to unroll the paper easily
  6. Always hang your Christmas tree lights first before the decorations
  7. Label your Christmas tree ornaments so they are easily identifiable for when you get them out next year, and store everything in reusable bags
  8. As soon as you have bought your tree, take it out of its netting to allow air to circulate and for the branches to settle
  9. Before moving it inside the house, keep your Christmas tree in a cool place, such as a shed or garage
  10. Feed your tree some water before decorating, and every day after that