As the festive season draws near, money is undoubtedly a subject on most people’s minds – and 2020 is no exception.
With most families feeling the pinch this Christmas, there has never been a better reason to invest in products that will stand the test of time. It’s precisely why the return of ITV series How To Spend It Well At Christmas With Phillip Schofield is such a welcome one.
From family-friendly board games to indulgent festive food, presenter Schofield, 58, is set to discover the seasonal products worth buying as part of the annual three-part series. And he’s not alone.
Joined by a host of celebrity guests, experts and members of the public, How To Spend It will test out this year’s most in-demand products, so you don’t have to.
The first episode will see pantomime veteran Christopher Biggins join members of the public in trialling this year’s must-have board games, while presenter Angelica Bell, Dancing On Ice professional Matt Evers, science expert Dallas Campbell and consumer journalist Harry Wallop explore everything from educational toys through to awe-worthy advent calendars.
Proving life needn’t be all doom and gloom in the midst of a pandemic, the series aims to put the sparkle back into the holiday season.
Ahead of the new series, we sat down with the This Morning presenter to discover more about what this year’s Christmas instalment has in store.
– What can viewers expect from this year’s edition of How To Spend It At Christmas?
(There are) lots of truffle products this year, because apparently it is in vogue.
How To Spend It is the best way to watch TV and know how to get the most out of your buck this Christmas – essentially, we will help you spend wisely!
There is absolutely no reason to spend a fortune on major brands when we will find something considerably more affordable.
– Did Covid affect filming for this year’s instalment?
It was difficult this year, but telly is incredibly adaptive and we changed our house.
Normally, we are at a lovely house in Surrey, but this time we were at a house in Oxfordshire, and it was a barn because that meant there was more space between everybody.
You won’t notice any difference on the telly. We were all in our own bubble and we were tested before we started shooting, and the guests were all tested, so that meant we could all be very close to each other, which was nice.
It’s the first time I’ve shaken hands with someone in a very long time.
– When it came to the products, did you have any personal favourites?
There are all sorts of things that you see during the course of filming, but, funnily enough, we were looking at food and I adore truffles! I mean, they are such a ridiculously expensive treat, so I hardly ever get to taste them, but nevertheless… I am there with our chef Matt and he just happened to be slicing truffles – a little bit of shaving here, a little bit of shaving there – and, as fast as he was shaving it, I just might have been nicking bits of truffle and eating them.
– What will Christmas look like for you this year?
Christmas will signal the beginning of the end of 2020 – a year that none of us will be sad to see the back of – and hopefully look forward to 2021, where things will begin to get that little bit more normal. We can all creep back, blinking, into the light.
It’s difficult to know quite what Christmas is going to be, nobody knows just yet … Maybe it will be amazing because we will be forced to be a little smaller?
We’ll be forced to adapt our Christmases and we don’t know quite who the family will be able to see at Christmas, but human beings are very resourceful.
Whatever Christmas is, well, I am sure we will all make the most of it.
– What do you hope viewers will take away from the show?
After a tough year, it’s more important than ever to know how to make your money work for you. Let’s make this a Christmas to remember.
How To Spend It Well At Christmas airs on ITV at 8.15pm on Tuesday November 17