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Pretending to like your presents, forgetting to buy batteries and arguing about what to watch on TV are among the biggest Christmas dilemmas, according to new research.

Turkey-based problems – like using up the leftovers and finding one that fits in the oven – topped the 25 festive predicaments – along with receiving a re-gifted present and organised ‘fun’.

Neighbours’ excessive use of Christmas lights on their homes, finding a gift you got someone in the Boxing Day sales and struggling to fit all the food you purchased into the fridge feature as well.

The research of 2,000 UK adults was commissioned to mark the launch of Celebrity Advice Bureau on UKTV’s entertainment channel W, which premieres on Monday 19th December at 9pm.

Ellie Taylor, comedian and Celebrity Advice Bureau panellist, said: “For many people, Christmas is indeed the most wonderful time of year.

“But the festive period can also bring its own unique stresses and strains. But don’t despair: there are solutions to many – if not all – of these issues.

“Why not postpone the big family get together by a few days and save cash by buying the majority of your gifts in the sales – who doesn’t love receiving polyester ‘Santa Stop Here’ socks on December 28th?”

Nine in 10 Brits said Christmas is stressful, with over half admitting they have had turkey-based troubles over the festive period and a third have found themselves without batteries on the big day.

Three in 10 respondents admit they often have to pretend to like presents when they receive a gift they don’t really like.

Other headaches experienced by respondents include being envious of your neighbour’s Christmas tree and feeling obliged to stay at a boring Christmas party for fear of offending the host.

Having to get someone a last-minute forgotten gift, watching your guests drink your most expensive alcohol and deciding who the designated driver will be are also feature as festive dilemmas.

Finding imaginative ways to explain to kids how Santa delivers the presents and coming up with a seating plan that will keep guests happy appear in the top seasonal predicaments as well.

Ellie Taylor said: “Also, remember you can always re-gift rubbish presents to any rubbish people, plus – the most important tip of all – avoid wasting your best booze on uninvited guests by serving exotic holiday liqueurs that have been languishing in the back of a cupboard.

“Nothing gets a party started like some 110 per cent proof Ouzo from Kavos circa 2002.”


THE TOP 25 CHRISTMAS DILEMMAS:


  1. Turkey troubles – such as having to eat lots of turkey over several days or being unable to find a turkey that fits in the oven.
  2. Batteries – forgetting to buy batteries or running out of batteries for the kids’ toys on Christmas Day when all the shops are closed.
  3. Fake joy – having to pretend to like your presents – especially when you bought that person something really nice.
  4. Storage – trying to fit everything into the fridge when your Christmas food order arrives.
  5. New Year’s Eve plans – figuring out what to do on New Year’s Eve.
  6. Boxing Day bargains – seeing that really expensive present you bought someone is now half price.
  7. Organised fun – being forced to have ‘fun’ by participating in games like charades.
  8. Re-gifting – realising you’ve been re-gifted a present someone was clearly given previously.
  9. Christmas tree envy – getting the needle because a neighbour’s Christmas tree is bigger, shapelier and better decorated than yours.
  10. Wi-Fi issues – staying with friends or family who have slow Wi-Fi or no Wi-Fi at all.
  11. Recycling – sorting all the recycling into the correct bins on Boxing Day.
  12. Dress code – worrying about what to wear on Christmas Day.
  13. Forgetting a present – rushing to shops to buy someone a gift because you left it too late or simply forgot.
  14. Boring parties – feeling obliged to stay at a boring Christmas party for fear of offending the host.
  15. Losing the TV remote – misplacing the control among all the wrapping paper and empty boxes – just as your chosen Christmas viewing is about to begin.
  16. Tasteless neighbours’ seasonal displays – getting irked by neighbours’ ostentatious exterior decorations.
  17. The Christmas film debate – arguing about which film to watch on Christmas Day.
  18. The age cut-off for gift-giving – the dilemma over what age it’s okay to stop giving presents to extended family members you hardly see.
  19. Booze hoovers – watching your guests drink your most expensive booze.
  20. Kids’ questions – explaining to the kids how Santa delivers the presents when there’s no chimney or when the fire is lit.
  21. Seating plans – deciding who should sit next to whom during Christmas dinner.
  22. The Queen’s Speech debate – debating when and whether to watch the Queen’s annual broadcast to the nation.
  23. Mistletoe – the awkwardness of enforced kissing.
  24. Designated driver arguments – coming to an agreement over who won’t drink.
  25. Trashing the presents – accidentally throwing out a present you have received by mistake.

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