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Will you be budgeting for Christmas this year?

Categories: Business, Canada, Community

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"It can be easy to get carried away with the holiday spirit when you're out shopping," said Marie Contreras, of the Royal Bank of Canada. (Darren Calabrese/Canadian Press)

A new poll suggests Canadians will spend an average of $640 on Christmas gifts for others this season.

That's $16 more than in 2010, according to an online poll commissioned by the Royal Bank of Canada.

Beyond gifts, Canadians will spend about $612 on holiday entertainment, decorations and travel expenses this year.

Added together, that means the average Canadian will spend $1,252 this Christmas - a considerable sum in light of economic uncertainty worldwide that has ripples in Canada.

The RBC poll found that, of consumers:

  • 55 per cent plan on using cash to finance their purchases.
  • 37 per cent will use credit cards to purchase gifts.
  • 27 per cent will use debit cards to purchase gifts.

RBC product manager Maria Contreras warned would-be shoppers to plan ahead and create a budget in order to stay within their spending limits.

"It can be easy to get carried away with the holiday spirit when you're out shopping," Contreras said.

How do you budget for Christmas, if at all? How do you decide how much to spend? Share your thoughts - and best budget tips! - in the field below.

(This survey is not scientific. Results are based on readers' responses.)

Tags: POV

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