With the festive shopping season just around the corner new research has revealed the top 20 things needed to make the perfect shopping trip.
According to a survey of 2,000 Brits, the perfect shop is at a location where you can shop, eat and socialise in one place, with several spots to socialise and a lot of convenience when it comes to paying.
The study also found that the perfect shopping trip lasts three hours, includes a visit to nine stores and involves only seven minutes queuing.
It also includes the purchase of five items and an overall spend of almost £118.
Consumer finance expert and TV presenter Jasmine Birtles said: “For many, shopping is not just a job that needs doing but a hobby.
“People will go on a shopping trip as a fun way to spend a Saturday or a day off work rather than simply because they need to buy something.
“Shopping is one of the UK’s favourite leisure activities, but shoppers are getting savvier and more demanding as purchasing online now offers them all sorts of attractive retail options.
“Discounts, loyalty points, freebies and other incentives are all now part of what the British shopper expects when they go out to spend their money.
“They’re also looking for speed and convenience with their transactions so that they can spend more time with the fun stuff like trying on clothes and eating in cafes.
“A contactless credit card with shopping rewards neatly combines the two, so it’s likely to be very popular with shopping devotees.”
The study, of 2,000 Brits found the perfect shopping trip involves trying on or testing six items from nine shops after starting at 10.28 on a Saturday morning and finishing with a meal out.
The total cost of the day, which includes a refuel break for coffee and cake, comes in at £118.
Technology and social media is playing a huge role in the shopping experience, with shoppers between the ages of 18 and 44 updating social media five times.
On top of that, they will send at least one text and one picture to get advice from friends and family before making a purchase.
Two in five will also use their mobile to compare prices between shops, and a quarter will go on to buy an item on their smart phone whilst out shopping.
It also found Brits would prefer to be accompanied by their partner, and half said they would make the day out extra special by going for a meal together after trawling the shops.
A third will go for a drink, 21 per cent will head to the cinema, and one in 10 will take part in a family-friendly activity such as bowling.
Researchers also found three-quarters are most likely to shop in places where they can earn rewards for their spending, with 60 per cent looking for retailer discounts, 40 per cent wanting free coffee or cake, and 35 per cent on the hunt for restaurant discounts and offers.
The study was commissioned by shopping centres intu and credit card experts MBNA to support the launch of the intu credit card.
Roger Binks, Customer Experience director at intu, said: “Everyone’s expectations of what makes for a great shopping trip have changed a lot over the last few years.
“This research, however, shows that the majority of us will still leave the house in return for a great day out, a chance to try out items and earn valuable rewards that they can’t get online.
“That’s why we’ve created the intu credit card with MBNA to reward our shoppers with great benefits, offers and discounts on food and drink they can’t get anywhere else.”
Michael Donald, MBNA’s Commercial and Payments executive, added: “It’s clear from this research that we’re a nation of sophisticated and savvy shoppers. This is why MBNA, the experts in credit cards and intu the experts in retail, have collaborated to develop a unique proposition – the intu credit card.
“The intu credit card is a new breed of reward card that offers a range of benefits whenever customers spend. Cardholders can access exclusive offers with retail and leisure brands in intu centres, from entertainment to leisure and dining in a way that they want to pay – from contactless to Apple Pay or Android Pay.”
Top 20 things needed to make the perfect modern-day shopping trip:
1. A location where I can shop, eat and socialise in one place
2. Being able to socialise with my friends or family
3. Being able to find my way around easily
4. Being able to use whatever payment method I wish (contactless, Apple Pay, etc.)
5. Being rewarded for my spending with discounts and offers at the place I’m shopping
6. Being rewarded when I spend a certain amount
7. Free parking
8. Ending up with several bags of goodies
9. Finding something I have wanted for ages in the sale
10. Finding somewhere new that I will return to on a future shopping trip
11. Discovering I fit into something a size smaller than I usually wear
12. Getting to the till to buy something and realising it is cheaper than I thought
13. Grabbing a bargain
14. Having simple ways to pay to avoid the queues
15. Loving the first thing I try on
16. Making an unplanned purchase
17. My favourite music being played in the shops
18. Not paying full price for anything
19. Returning to a tried and tested shopping destination
20. Treating myself to something
* Intu owns 15 shopping centres across the UK including intu Trafford Centre, intu Lakeside and intu Metrocentre.