Xmas Cash Splash: More Than $300 Million To Be Spent On Nieces And Nephews

Being an aunt or uncle is a special role -- but it's one that comes with a hefty price tag at Christmas -- according to a new study.

When it comes to buying Christmas gifts for their nieces and nephews, Australians seem to have an urge to splurge.

So much so, they're projected to fork out $313 million on gifts for their nieces and nephews this holiday season.

The extravagant amount comes from new research by LEGO Australia, which found over 60 percent of aunts and uncles feel the pressure to buy ‘cool’ gifts.

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The study figures were calculated last month using sample proportions and recent Australian population data.

The study found majority of aunts and uncles wanted to be seen as 'young and relatable' by their nieces and nephews and often worried about their gift choices.

Over 40 percent of aunts and uncles also confessed to 'overspending' on Christmas presents.

Aunts and uncles will fork out $313 million on gifts for their nieces and nephews this holiday season in Australia. Image: FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty.

With four nephews aged six to 19 and no children of her own, 'super aunt' Lani Richmond told 10 daily she happily spoiled them all.

"I love to buy Christmas gifts or give pocket money.

When my older nephews were around three and five, they got massive toy trucks for Christmas and the eldest has had holidays to the US."

Richmond is content to spend her hard-earned money working as part of pop star Aloe Blacc's management team on "auntie duties".

"The older ones get cool new outfits and the younger ones get the latest trend toys, like Pikmi Pops.

When traveling, I'll try and score something interesting or cool from that country for them."

Other research has found that Aussies won't be as spend thrift as usual this Christmas.

Industry research company IBISWorld found consumers will be more cautious with gift shopping this Christmas.

This is reportedly due to the rising cost of living and stagnant wage growth.

While aunties and uncles will evidently be spending big, IBISWorld found consumers will be cautious with gift shopping this Christmas. Image: S3studio/Getty.

Common gifts for children like toys, games and sporting equipment are expected to bear the brunt of growing competition in the recreational sector.

"Retailers of these gifts will likely face strong pricing pressures which is anticipated to drive the decline in revenue in Christmas spending," IBISWorld Senior Industry Analyst, Hayley Munro-Smith, told 10 daily.

Munro-Smith recommended aunts and uncles invest in "active outings" with their nieces and nephews as gift alternatives.

"Water parks, camping grounds and amusement parks will likely see solid demand, as the nation continues to embrace a more active lifestyle and healthy habits," she said.

On average, most retailers will generate nearly 30 percent of their year's annual sales during the Christmas period.

Gavin Dennis, Chief Financial Officer and Head of Retail Insights for eBay Australia, told 10 daily traditional gifts shouldn't be counted out yet.

LEGO's Fantastic Beasts Grindelwald's Escape Playset is in the Top 15 toys for kids on eBay Australia. Image: Will Salkeld Photography.

"On December 3 alone, we saw 2.62 million visitors on our site buying gifts at an average rate of four per second. As part of this, toys on the site sold at a rate of one every three seconds," Dennis said.

While the holiday season is when spending on a person's relatives peaks, spoiling nieces and nephews can be a regular gig for some.

Member of hip-hop trio Naughty By Nature, Vinnie Brown, told 10 daily he has "easily" spent over $1 million raising his nieces.

Naughty By Nature star Vinnie Brown with his niece Janine. Image: Instagram.

"As an uncle I've supported my sister in raising her three children and spoiled them with consistency in their lives," he described.

"I mostly gave my sister money so it passed on to my nieces. I've purchased cars and clothes for them. Nothing super extravagant, but it all definitely costs."

Featured image: Getty.

Contact the author: samelia@networkten.com.au.