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7 in 10 foreign home owners spend Christmas abroad

A further 36% choose to combine British and local traditions when abroad and of these, 86% keep the UK customs of exchanging presents on Christmas Day and decorating a Christmas tree. Brits who spend the holiday season overseas are less worried about eating a Christmas pud (39%), keeping the English Father Christmas (36%) and watching the Queen’s speech (11%).

More than a third of Britons continue to enjoy the foreign traditions when celebrating in the UK, particularly cooking foreign dishes and observing Epiphany (6 January).

Of those looking to buy a property abroad next year, the pull of a foreign Christmas is even stronger, with over 80% intending to always or often spend their Christmases there in the future. Half of these potential homeowners say they would exclusively adopt the local festive customs.

Ann Wright, International Development Manager of Primelocation International, said: "The British have many lovely Christmas traditions, but, for an increasing number who own a foreign property, the UK’s miserable winter weather – often a far cry from the fairytale white Christmas – and the sameness of the festivities after many years, are fuelling the desire to spend the holiday period abroad. What’s more, people are fed up with the lingering doom and gloom over the economy and housing market and the talk of bumper banker bonuses and are keen to escape elsewhere.

"Christmas is not solely a British institution and it’s great to see that people are embracing the local festivities of their foreign holiday homes during the season of goodwill – whether it be eating the main Christmas meal after returning from Midnight Mass in France, leaving shoes to be filled by the Italian folklore character La Befana, or opening gifts left by the Three Kings on Epiphany in Spain."

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