Research of 2,000 adults who celebrate Christmas found that after last year, a third believe it’s more important than ever to feel close to loved ones.
As a result, many will be going overboard to spend time with family and friends this festive season, including watching TV together (62 per cent), making video calls to one another (33 per cent) and sharing photos online (29 per cent).
And 42 per cent plan to have their most ‘connected’ Christmas ever.
As a result, the average adult will spend almost seven-and-a-half hours online on December 25th, which includes one hour of video calls, an hour and 42 minutes watching films and an hour and 12 minutes scrolling on social media.
But this means four in 10 would experience frustration if their internet connection dropped at Christmas.
Offline ways people plan to spend time together on the big day include eating together (73 per cent), going for a walk (50 per cent) and playing board games (47 per cent).
The research, commissioned by full fibre broadband provider Hyperoptic, found almost a fifth would feel lonely during the festive season without any access to tech.
And a third believe that while it’s impossible to see all family and friends over Christmas, an online connection allows them to stay in touch.
This year, 17 per cent plan to video call or phone someone who is spending Christmas alone and a further 15 per cent will send social media messages to them.
While more than a third of those polled said technology and internet connection ensure no one should feel isolated at this time of the year.
Charles Davies, Managing Director, ISP, Hyperoptic said: “The research shows how families hope to be more connected than ever despite the changing landscape of Christmas again this year.
“Technology and internet connection clearly plays a vital part in celebrating with family and friends who don’t live locally.
“Whether together or apart on December 25th, wi-fi connection allows people to spend time together including in-person activities such as streaming music, films and games or having long distanced catch up.”
A digital Christmas
The research also found many can’t imagine a Christmas day without watching festive films (42 per cent), exchanging messages with their family and friends (38 per cent) and having video calls (23 per cent).
While a quarter feel people try to outdo each other with content of their Christmas Day online, 23 per cent admit to sharing family photos from their celebrations on social media.
And 19 per cent of those polled via OnePoll will share an image of their Christmas dinner while others post about a specific gift, what they’re wearing and even content of them opening gifts.
A nosy fifth like to see other people’s lunch on social media and views of people’s festive walks (17 per cent).
Charles added: “Video calls or online gaming are brilliant ways to connect with people who can’t be there, or perhaps live far away and many of our greatest memories can be made that way.
“It’s positive to see how many people plan to connect with those who are spending Christmas alone, highlighting how important an online connection can be.”
How Brits plan to stay connected this Christmas
1. Eating together
2. Watching TV together
3. Having a drink together
4. Watching a film together
5. Going for a walk together
6. Playing board games
7. Cooking together
8. Sending messages or photos to group chats e.g. WhatsApp, Facebook messenger
9. Listening to music together
10. Taking photos / creating videos
11. Video calls
12. Doing a quiz together
13. Sharing photos online e.g. family photo on Christmas Day
14. Playing online games together
15. Reading together