When does Christmas really begin?

This week around Cardiff we saw the first obvious signs that Christmas is on its way.
We had the big Christmas lights switch on in the city centre, the opening of the Christmas Market and Winter Wonderland, and the controversial main tree was unveiled outside of Cardiff Castle. Retail advertisement has now also turned to the festive season as pop-up Christmas shops appear and every TV advert attempts to capture the festive spirit. Everywhere you look, the magic of Christmas captures the imagination.
But when does it really begin to feel a bit like Christmas? When do we start counting the days? When is too early to be thinking about Santa coming down our chimney? I went out around Cardiff to ask people when Christmas began for them.

Thomas, 28
“For me it was yesterday when they turned on the Christmas lights. That’s when all the decorations go up and you don’t feel so guilty about the countdown to Christmas then!”

Geoff, 22
“For me, it’s probably about the 15th December. Now is definitely really early. I don’t start doing things until at most 10-15 days before Christmas, and then a few days after Christmas is when it ends.”

Ruth, 24
“Christmas begins when the lights are up, and you can see all the market stalls. Winter Wonderland in Cardiff is amazing all the time, I love that. Also, now they have released all the Christmas adverts, that get you in the mood for a bit of Christmas, and then you can think right, family and friends get around and be merry.”

Celina, 31
“Because of the job, it was actually in August for me, because that is when I was called about this. So you start thinking about Christmas around the day, but actually I feel like it starts middle of November when everyone starts thinking about presents and how to get people close to them.”

Hannah, 21
“Usually last week of term, when Christmas events start happening, you start doing Christmas meals with your societies and your school starts putting up Christmas decorations. November feels a bit early, because we’ve just had Halloween and Bonfire Night. By the time it gets to Christmas you’re bored of it. The magic has gone if you do it this month.”

Katrina, 22
“When I start noticing the Christmas carols in my head without realising. Around mid-November, so kind of now really!”