Is Christmas in Danger?

Sofia Scheepers, Writer

For Christmas, many people like hosting large gatherings for friends and family or like going on vacation. But over the past three years, as times have changed, new problems have emerged. From Covid to inflation to conflicts and now, this year new changes from climate change. But the question still stands: Will climate change affect people’s traditions for Christmas?

As prices continue to rise in all of Europe- whether it be in the supermarket, gas stations, stores or restaurants . People have begun to wonder if this winter season will resemble the old ones. During an interview, a retired neighbour said “I’m worried about how I’m going to afford all my children’s and grandchildren’s Christmas gifts along with hosting them for a few days with the high costs of heating, I’m not even going to talk about the cost of meals and buying extra food”. Moreover, families that travel abroad in Europe to visit relatives might think twice about travelling long distances this year. They might suffer from the problem of a reduced number of flights and issues at the airports, such as increased ticket prices. 

According to Forbes news about 40% of holiday shoppers have said climate change is changing the way they shop, making them buy fewer items, more water, buying less from expensive brands and using coupons and discounts whenever possible. It is remarkable how this has led to the popularity of second hand shops in Switzerland and organisations as a way to help reverse climate change. In addition, according to an American newspaper, about 59% of Americans have said that they are stressed about how they’re not going to have a ‘White Christmas’ or be able to spend their holiday season doing the things they do every year. So, they have been looking at ways to change their traditions and help slow down the effects of climate change instead. 

Here in Europe, governments are already informing the people that they are not going to light the cities for Christmas like they have done in the past. Particularly in Switzerland, the ski resorts will see drastic changes because of the lack of snow and increased prices in the popular ski mountains like Verbier and Gstaad. 

On the other hand, we wonder if all these changes will create a more conscious citizen about our resources and how fragile our world and habits are. And maybe from now on we will think twice when buying clothes, eating out, the choice between public transportation and cars. 

So the question left to ask is, is this Christmas going to be different? Definitely yes.

Is it going to change us and our habits? Only time can tell.