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Big spenders: grandparents & school holiday costs

Posted in: Research Last updated: 15 Aug 2013

Many grandparents are proving to be the backbone of the school holidays, with a massive 67 per cent of them looking after their grandchildren, a survey published today, 15 August, reveals.

Many grandparents are proving to be the backbone of the school holidays, with a massive 67 per cent of them looking after their grandchildren, a survey published today, 15 August, reveals.

But treats don’t come cheap.  Research among 600 grandparents across Britain reveals nearly a third spend to the tune of more than £500 a year on their grandchildren.  Eleven per cent of them spend more than £1,000.

A spokesperson for Engage Mutual, which conducted the research, said:

“Calling on grandparents to help juggle holiday childcare is a familiar necessity for many families, and those grandparents who care for their grandchildren know how expensive the job can be.

“There’s no doubt that grandparents enjoy the time they spend with younger family members.  But there is also a recognition that from ice creams to admission prices, costs can quickly mount up over the holidays.”

Whilst the majority of grandparents say they don’t worry about what they spend as part of their holiday time with young family members, nearly one in five (19 per cent) say they do have concerns.

Younger grandparents (aged 40-44) tend to spend more, an average of £353 during holidays, but also confess to worrying more about what they spend.

Grandparents over 55 are less worried, but also more conservative in their spending, averaging £182.

When it comes to the big spenders among grandparents, a child’s best bet is to ‘ask grandad’.  With an average holiday spend of £272 on grandkids, grandads are much more likely to indulge.

Grandmas confess they are a bit more careful, with 20 per cent saying they worry about the amount of money they spend.  Despite this, they still provide a generous £167 holiday spend.

The majority of grandparents agree that watching their grandkids grow, making them happy, and enjoying experiences together are what they get out of caring for and treating the grandkids.  One in six also confess that being the favourite grandparent is an additional benefit!

The Engage Mutual spokesperson concluded:

“Whatever their motives, many grandparents are doing a great job.  Being able to find low cost and no cost ways to spend quality time with the grandchildren, and help make money go further in the holidays, should help ensure everyone keeps smiling.”

Research conducted 6-12 August 2013 by One Poll among 673 grandparents of school age children