On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me, a Scotland Loves Local Gift Card! Or at least that’s how we’re singing the famous Christmas carol this year, in honour of the collective appreciation for all things local that is sweeping the nation. Three in four shoppers are now more likely to shop local than they were a year ago, suggests a Mastercard survey from October 2020. To celebrate this wave of positivity for our local businesses, we’ve got 5 reasons to shop local this Christmas.
1. The multiplier effect. Perhaps the biggest reason to shop local is the fact that every pound spent in the local area is worth so much more. When you spend £20 at a local café, that money pays for their organic fruit and vegetables which are grown down the road, it pays the wages of a person who lives on your street, and gets reinvested back into the area. Suddenly, that £20 is worth so much more. Beth Neilson is part of the management team at Scotts Troon Yacht Haven, a restaurant where you can spend the South Ayrshire Gift Card- one of the Scottish regions with its own Scotland Loves Local Gift Card. Beth said: “Shopping and supporting local has always been important, but never so much as now. Everyone wants to see the area where they live do well, and we can make that happen by supporting the South Ayrshire Gift Card, giving them to friends and family as Christmas gifts and giving back to the community where we live.”
2. Get out, get social, get supporting local! Loneliness in the pandemic is real with over 3.7 million adults, that’s over 7% of the UK adult population, confessing to feeling lonely often or always in an ONS survey to April 2021, a rise of over 1 million. Younger people are especially affected, and those who live alone. One of the best things about shopping locally are the business owners you meet, people who are truly passionate about what they do. So instead of an endless stream of deliveries, move beyond your own front door to the world beyond and flex your Scotland Loves Local Gift Card muscles! Better yet, buy one for someone in your life and give them the nudge they need to get out, get social and get supporting local.
3. Items and experiences you can’t get anywhere else. If you’re anything like us, you’re always on the lookout for unique items and experiences, the locally created, the specially sourced and the unusual. A Mastercard survey suggests that 72% of us trust recommendations made by local business owners. And with over 2500 businesses already part of their regional Scotland Loves Local Gift Card, and more joining every day, we’re confident that they’ll have some outstanding gift suggestions up their sleeves.
4. The January lifeline. Studies have shown that most local gift cards are spent in January! Yes, those eager beavers who were gifted a local gift card as a Christmas gift most often head into the town or city to spend it during the first three months of the year. And once the festive rush is over, this is typically a really quiet time for businesses, and there is nothing they’ll appreciate more than a Scotland Loves Local Gift Card being handed over.
5. The feel good glow. ‘Tis the season to shop local! It’s true that there’s a real feel good glow that comes from supporting a local business. Through your support, they’re able to keep their business going in your town or city, and trust us, your support has never been more needed or appreciated. In this, the season of goodwill, let’s all make a commitment to loving local as much as possible, and sharing that feel-good glow through the community.
If you’re ready to love local this Christmas, choose your favourite card here: