Almost a third of Britons will get into debt to help fund their Christmas spending, research has revealed.
The YouGov study found 31% will go into some form of debt during the festive period, which could include taking out a personal loan or borrowing from friends and family.
Of this third, 58% will spend more than average on credit cards, while 39% will go overdrawn as a result of buying gifts and socialising, the survey showed.
Jerry Mulle, sales and marketing director at Intelligent Environments, which commissioned the research, said: "Christmas is typically a cash-strapped time of the year but as harsher economic conditions start to bite the number of people falling into debt or behind on their payments looks set to rise.
"Financial institutions therefore have a duty to help customers better manage their finances and make it easier for them to repay their debts."
Research found that those aged 25-34 are struggling the most with their finances, with 64% of this group facing debts or arrears of some kind, but not including mortgages.
Meanwhile, 26% of people are now going overdrawn at least once a month.
A quarter of Britons who have a bank account said online and mobile services, such as a text message or email alert or the ability to view their balance on a phone, would help them from going into the red.
Mr Mulle added: "As the uptake of smartphones and tablets continues to grow, interactions across digital platforms have become the norm.
"As a result, online and mobile channels are becoming increasingly relevant to consumers struggling with debt by providing them with the convenience and privacy they desire to manage their arrears."