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Media Release

Shoppers dig deep to spend on dads

Shoppers dig deep to spend on dads

Parental gift gap revealed - Aussies spend more for Father's Day than Mother's Day.

It’s the age old question, how much is enough to spend on mum or dad?

While we may not be able to answer that question, when it comes to whom we spend more on, data from Commonwealth Bank reveals dads take the prize, with Aussies spending $1.58 billion last year in the lead-up to Father’s Day - 15 per cent higher than the $1.37 billion spent in the lead-up to Mother’s Day1.

Spending for Father’s Day has increased year-on-year, with the data showing a 37 per cent increase since 2015, with an average spend per gift sitting at $50.

Rohan Ritchie, Commonwealth Bank's General Manager Everyday Banking and Payments, believes the data reveals a surprising result.

“According to our customers’ spending data, last year Aussie’s spoilt dad at Father’s Day. While it’s lovely to celebrate our parents with gifts, and being a dad myself it’s lovely to receive them, it’s also important to remember to keep an eye on spending,” said Mr Ritchie.

Tech and gadgets gain ground

When it comes to the most popular gifts for dad, dining out took top spot with $400 million being spent last year. Surprisingly, it seems fashion-related items are more popular than hardware. Last year, we only spent $94 million on hardware-related items, compared to $114 million on fashion.

The biggest increase in spending for 2017 was in the tech and gadget category, with $52 million spent on this category, up 32 per cent since 2016, and 62 per cent since 2015.

Meanwhile, the day before Father’s Day is when we see the biggest spend volume, reaching $117 million as many shop in a last minute rush.

According to Mr Ritchie, we often see a spike in spending around days like Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day.

“We can all fall into the trap of buying expensive gifts to show how much we care. If you add up what you spend on gifts collectively over an entire year, it can put a serious dent in your savings. The good news is, it’s not hard to keep your spending in check.”

Mr Ritchie’s top tips for managing your money this Father’s Day:

  • Know your limit: before you buy a gift for dad, set your budget. This will help you avoid overspending. It can also be helpful to set aside a little savings here and there in the lead-up to Father’s Day.
  • Don’t leave buying a gift until the last minute: shopping in a rush is not only stressful, but it can also lead to bad purchasing decisions. Make sure you set aside some time to do your shopping so you can tackle it with a clear head.
  • Keep an eye on your accounts: online and digital tools, like the CommBank app, allow you to access and view your accounts anywhere, anytime. Take advantage of this and ensure you are aware of your everyday transaction account balance, as well as all incoming and outgoing transactions categorised through Spend Tracker. This is especially handy if you’re buying dad a few gifts from different shops, which can make it hard to keep a running tally of what you’ve spent. Our CommBank app also offers spending notifications to make this even easier. For anyone who hasn’t enabled these notifications, I’d highly recommend doing so.
  • Split the cost: often siblings will pitch in to buy dad one gift. This can sometimes be a more cost-effective way to get dad something a little more expensive without breaking the bank. If this is your approach, to make sure you aren’t left waiting for your relatives to transfer you money, register for PayID or apps like Beem It, so you can receive payments instantly.

Important information

1. We tracked spending across the following categories over the two weeks, leading up to both Father’s Day and Mother’s Day: all Restaurants & Dining out, Hotels, Entertainment, Department & Discount Stores, Travel Agencies and Tour Operators, Fashion, Electronic, Hardware, Automotive, Technology and gadgets, Grooming, Sports, Household Appliances, Jewellery, Gift Stores, Chocolate & Candy.