A survey by a credit reporting agency shows consumers are putting their credit cards away pre-Christmas.
According to Dun & Bradstreet, nearly half of all consumers will use their own savings to pay for Christmas expenses.
The survey, which focuses on New Zealanders' expectations for savings, credit use, spending and debt performance, also found that only 5% plan to apply for a new credit card.
Likewise, only 9% of consumers plan to apply for a credit limit increase.
The agency's general manager, John Scott told Evening Business on Checkpoint that people have had a turbulent year and are taking a more conservative approach, indicating they were "not prepared to splurge" at this time.
He says one of the messages of the survey is that those on higher incomes are looking to pay down mortages and credit card payments while others were struggling to pay their bills, meaning a lot less money available to go to discretionary items.