Black Eye (Friday), train chaos, postal strikes and snow-less streets, it might not be a traditional winter wonderland but 2016 is set to be another traditional British Christmas. If you’re dreading the mince pies and mistletoe, here’s your need-to-know on surviving Christmas this December.
Post your cards in time
There will be postal strikes on the 19th and 20th of December. Less than 300 Post Office branches will be disrupted so check www.postoffice.co.uk to see if your local branch is affected.
Get the first round in
Us Brits love any excuse for a drink so prepare your liver and your pocket for Mad Friday or Black Eye Friday on the last Friday of work before Christmas.
Prepare for travel mayhem
Southern Rail is up to its old tricks again and striking over the festive period. Don’t miss out on the Christmas pudding and check with your train provider in advance for any scheduled strikes, or just take the bus.
Track your presents
A strike by Argos' delivery drivers has just been adverted so make sure the courier or delivery company you're using is free from action too or just Click and Collect for confirmation that you'll have those presents in time for Christmas.
Ditch the wrapping paper
Let’s face it, wrapping presents is a hell only a few of us have mastered. Go simple this Christmas and buy reusable gift bags.
Make a playlist
Even Santa himself doesn’t want to listen to Last Christmas on repeat. Make up your own playlist with a festive song thrown in to keep everyone happy and the radio firmly switched off.
Prepare for hangovers
Whether it’s a can of Irn Bru or a greasy fry up, get your hangover cures prepared in advance. Trust us, you’ll need them.
Get the TV on
Whether it’s sloppy kisses from granny or intrusive personal questions from mum, Christmas wouldn’t be the same without the family. Go easy on them and embrace the madness over a classic episode of Only Fools and Horses.
Forget about sledging
We might be dreaming of a white Christmas but December is the month when snow is least likely to fall and 2016 looks no different.
Avoid the sales
Whilst we’re still recovering from Christmas, millions of us will visit the Boxing Day sales. Forget the frantic crowds and take your sale searching online.
Have a 'busy' diary
Avoid declining any awkward NYE invites and have a plan set in stone so you can ring in 2017 your own merry way.
Book your cinema tickets
Don't forget Star Wars is out on 16 December, so at the very least you can escape to the cinema for sci-fi solitude over the festive period.