Father’s Day: do you splash the cash?

Father’s Day, celebrated on the third Sunday of June (falling on the 16th this year!), is often seen as the overlooked younger brother of the older, more widely recognised Mother’s Day. So, should you be lavishing attention on your father this June? According to a recent survey conducted by leading online retailer Littlewoods.com, the answer is a firm ‘yes’. Of the UK-based dads surveyed, 3 out of 4 said that Father’s Day meant something to them.

When it comes to a battle between these two occasions, Mother’s Day definitely has the advantage. A whopping 6 out of 10 dads felt that their kids make greater effort on Mother’s Day, whilst 1 in 10 dads said that their kids often forgot about Father’s Day altogether.

Of course, it’s not that we don’t adore our dads in the UK – most likely, we respond to the discrepancy between the two holidays’ popularity. After all, Father’s Day is a relatively new celebration: considering Mother’s Day has existed in various incarnations for centuries, there’s been far more time for traditions and expectations to take root.

In terms of spending, however, dads are surprisingly relaxed. Far from expecting vast sums to be spent on them, just under half of the dads surveyed were happy for their kids to spend less than £5 on Father’s Day presents, whilst a third were pleased as punch with a gift worth between £5 and £10, perhaps indicating that it really is the thought that counts, rather than the monetary value of the present.

Kids could certainly afford to be more imaginative with their gift choices, however, considering that 47% of dads admitted to receiving socks for Father’s Day, whilst a third had, on at least one occasion, received nothing at all!

It’s definitely not all bad news, however. Despite receiving a few uninspired gifts, the overwhelming majority of dads (97%) still felt appreciated by their kids. Father’s Day is a great opportunity to show that appreciation, and it doesn’t have to cost the earth – a small gift chosen with care is worth just as much as something extravagant.

“It’s a day for a family barbecue, or to take Dad fishing or on some other activity he enjoys,” suggests Kate Stone Lombardi in Time Ideas. A thoughtful gift, a great card or an activity the family can enjoy together may be all it takes to make this Father’s Day a memorable one.

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