With the Met Office issuing forecasts of colder air towards the end of this week, and possible snow across the UK, it looks like the mild winter is coming to an end, and bets for a white Christmas could be on.
But according to a new survey commissioned by independent UK parcel carrier, Yodel, nearly a fifth (19 per cent) of Brits are hoping for no snow this Christmas. And it seems our dislike of the white stuff increases with age. Over a quarter (27 per cent) of 55 to 64 year olds shun snow, rising to a third (32 per cent) of 65 to 74 year olds and two fifths (40 per cent) of people aged 75 and over.
When questioned why people wouldn’t want snow, almost half (47 per cent) said it is because it makes it difficult to get out of the house and 45 per cent said it makes it hard to get to work. Over a third (36 per cent) are scared of slipping and a quarter (26 per cent) say it is because it costs them more in heating.
Overall, three fifths (62 per cent) of respondents have experienced some negative effects from snow in the past, with a fifth (20 per cent) unable to get to the shops during the crucial Christmas present buying period. Another fifth (18 per cent) have caught a cold or flu, and 16 per cent have had a fall.
Dick Stead, executive chairman of Yodel, said: "While snow looks lovely, it can make life in general, including deliveries, more challenging. As part of our preparations for the run up to Christmas, when we see parcel volumes more than double, we've been looking at Met Office data and forecasts show that we’re set for some snow."
However, if it does make an appearance, Yodel has plans in place to beat the bad weather and keep deliveries flowing.
"We’ve got tons of rock salt, gritters and snow ploughs to keep our sites clear, and shovels, ice melt, de-icer and scrapers, to keep our couriers and drivers on the road," explains Dick.
"As we've seen in the past, weather isn't the easiest thing to forecast, but we’re monitoring it closely and it looks like it's due to change quite suddenly towards the end of this week and some areas are going to be experiencing snow in the coming days. As our survey shows, up to a fifth of us haven’t been able to get gifts due to snow in the past, and our message to consumers is not to get caught out and to buy Christmas presents early this year.
"Should the worse happen, and roads close, we've got extra storage in our sites to hold packages, where they'll be catalogued and we'll be operating a strict first in, first out policy with parcels when the highways reopen.
"At Yodel we're more like the 39 per cent of people who filled in our questionnaire, who enjoy the festive atmosphere that snow brings, but only if it's for a couple of days – and preferably after all the presents have been delivered."
The research is part of Yodel's ongoing customer feedback programme, Have Your Say, conducted for Yodel by eDigitalResearch. To date consumers have given their views on more than 1.7 million deliveries, providing Yodel with instant feedback and allowing the carrier to identify best practice and areas for innovation and improvement.