£20.6bn worth of posted gifts may not arrive for Christmas

£20.6bn worth of posted gifts may not arrive for Christmas

Those sending presents by post this Christmas may be setting their loved ones up for disappointment, as new research suggests as many as £20.6bn worth of gifts could arrive late – or not arrive at all.

A survey by Western Union reveals that one in four people in Britain have sent presents that arrived late or went missing in the post altogether – creating an added stress at Christmas that most of us could do without.

Sending gifts overseas is a particular concern: 42 per cent of us worry when sending presents abroad that they may never reach their loved ones, or that the gift will arrive after the festivities are over. This is a particular concern for people who despite post office warnings, continue to send cash in the post.

Rajiv Garodia, Regional Vice President at Western Union, which commissioned the research, said: “This new research helps to explain why we see a spike in our money transfer services at Christmas time every year. Money transfer is a stress free way to send a gift of cash to a loved one.”

The research also reveals cash is set to be a popular gift this year:
• 55 per cent like to receive money as it allows them to buy what they really want
• 54 per cent agree that a present you don’t want is disappointing
• Nearly a quarter say they think money can be a personal and thoughtful gift

Nick Keegan from London who has given cash as a gift for many years commented:
“I have a big family: three brothers and two sisters. I also have lots of aunts and uncles as my dad is one of five. I also have god children to remember. Finding the perfect gift for everyone is not only impossible but would take me weeks. No matter how old my family and friends are, they all appreciate cash as it means they can buy exactly what they want”.

Rajiv Garodia at Western Union added:
“With cash high on people’s wish lists this year, we’re keen to raise awareness of the benefits of money transfer. It’s a fast, reliable way to gift cash to loved ones, both within the UK and abroad.”

Top 10 tips for making sure your gift arrives on time
1.Always check the last postal date before sending your present or cheque
2.Get your gift in the mail a few days before to avoid the rush
3.Ensure you have the right postage value on your gift
4.Make sure the postal address is clear
5.Always note a return address on the back of your parcel or envelope
6.If in doubt, send it recorded delivery
7.When buying gifts online, confirm delivery times with the retailer before purchase
8.Ask online retailers if they can send the gift directly to your friend or family member, some companies will even wrap them for you
9.Ask you bank how long it will take to transfer money. Remember, holidays and weekends don’t count as working days!
10.Remember, money transferred by Western Union can be there in minutes.
Visit westernunion.co.uk or phone 0800 833 833 for more information

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