How much do Christmas Lights Cost to Run?

With energy costs featuring so prominently on the national agenda, this is a question that many of us will be asking this year. As the holiday season approaches and ...

Xmas Lights Running Costs

With energy costs featuring so prominently on the national agenda, this is a question that many of us will be asking this year. As the holiday season approaches and we look forward to adorning our homes with festive decorations, Christmas lights will often be the focal point in our plans, helping to create that enchanting ambience.

However, amidst all the cheer and merriment, it’s vital to be aware of the expenses associated with running those dazzling displays. In this blog, we’ll take a look at the factors that influence the cost of running Christmas lights and provide tips on how to keep your electricity bill in check.

Type of Lights

The type of lights you use can significantly influence the cost of running Christmas lights. There are two primary options: traditional incandescent lights and energy-efficient LED Christmas lights, which are the only type of Christmas lighting we sell here at Bents Shop.

Incandescent lights

These are the classic Christmas lights that emit a warm, nostalgic glow. They are less energy-efficient than LEDs, as they use more electricity to generate light.

LED lights

LED (Light Emitting Diode) lights are much more energy-efficient than incandescent. They consume only a fraction of the energy while emitting bright, vibrant colours. Although LED lights may cost more upfront, they can save you money in the long run due to their lower energy consumption.

All our Christmas String Lights, Indoor Illuminated Decorations and Outdoor Lit Figures and Trees are powered by LEDs, making them the perfect choice for inside and out this year.


Wattage is a critical factor in determining how much your Christmas lights will cost to run. Higher-wattage lights consume more electricity. Be sure to check the wattage rating on the packaging before purchasing your lights. LED lights typically use significantly fewer watts than incandescent while delivering the same or even better illumination.

Hours of Operation

The length of time you keep your Christmas lights on each day plays a significant role in your overall running costs. Consider using a timer or manually turning off your lights when they're not needed…or smart meters and energy apps can identify times when costs are low. Managing your light show this way can help reduce the overall running costs and, consequently, lower your electricity bill.

Total Number of Lights

The number of lights you use is also a factor in the cost of running your Christmas lights. The more lights you have, the more energy they'll consume. To reduce costs, consider decorating with a minimalist approach or focus on strategic placements that emphasise key features of your home.

Electricity Rates

Ultimately, the cost to run Christmas lights is influenced by your energy provider, which can vary depending on who you use . To estimate the cost of running your Christmas lights, check your utility bill for the per-kilowatt-hour (kWh) rate and use it in your calculations.

Calculating the Cost

To estimate the cost of running your Christmas lights, you can follow this simple formula:

Total cost = (Total wattage of lights / 1000) x Hours of operation x Number of days x Local electricity rate

For example, if you have 10 strands of LED lights, each using 10 watts, and you run them for 6 hours a day for 30 days at an electricity rate of £0.12 per kWh:

Total cost = (10 strands x 10 watts/strand / 1000) x (6 hours/day x 30 days) x £0.12/kWh = £2.16

So, in this scenario, the cost of running your Christmas lights for the entire holiday season would be approximately £2.16.

Wrapping it up

While the festive glow of Christmas lights adds charm to your holiday decor, it's important to be mindful of the associated energy costs in the UK. Choosing energy-efficient LED lights, controlling the number of lights and their operating hours, and being aware of your local electricity rates can help you enjoy a beautifully lit home without a sky-high electricity bill. By taking these factors into consideration, you can strike a balance between festive cheer and energy efficiency, ensuring a joyful and cost-effective Christmas!