UK households are expected to spend GBP792m (US$1.2bn) less on Christmas than they did in 2011, with spending forecast to be down 3.46%, according to a recent YouGov Sixth Sense report.

Consumers are still expected to spend approximately GBP22bn on gifts, cards, decorations and food and drink this holiday season.

According to the report, the average UK household will spend GBP835 on celebrating Christmas this year. This is down slightly from last year, when the average household spend was GBP865.

The biggest expense will be gifts for friends and family at GBP634, with the top categories of Christmas gifts for UK consumers being books, clothing and music/DVDs. Consumers will spend GBP161 on food, and GBP40 on decorations.

"Considering the on-going economic uncertainty, it is no surprise that UK households are scaling back their Christmas spending this year," said YouGov SixthSense research director James McCoy.

"That aside, they are still set to spend GBP22bn on gifts, decorations, and food and drink, which is a pretty remarkable sum and shows that Brits are determined not to let the recession dampen their Christmas celebrations too much. One interesting finding of this report that will likely be of concern to grocery retailers is that households are expected to scale back their food and drink spend by nearly 9% from last year."