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Winterlights festival transforms Luxembourg City into a Christmas market for all, Source: Sabino Parente via City of Luxembourg

The cost of Christmas in Luxembourg

The cost of Christmas in Luxembourg

How much do municipalities pay for Christmas decorations in the Grand Duchy?

With the holiday season in full swing, it is easy to get carried away and forget that all that Christmas spirit, the presents, the lights, and the decorations, have a cost. In one of Europe’s smallest countries – Luxembourg, the cost for municipalities usually ranges in the tens and hundreds of thousands, and sometimes it even goes into the millions. But nobody can put a price on Christmas.

Winterlights, Luxembourg City’s shining beacon

Naturally, the capital of the Grand Duchy, Luxembourg City, takes the cake when it comes to expensive Christmas decorations. This year’s edition of the Winterlights festival takes place between 19 November and 2 January and it consists of a city-wide Christmas market with live concerts, exhibitions, performances and workshops for kids.

The budget for lights across the capital totals out at around 1.25 million euros. Quite probably, said lights can be seen as a literal beacon of light from across Luxembourg, due to the country’s modest size. At the same time, the budget for stalls, security, stages, sound and etc. comes to another 1.95 million euros.

All and all, this makes out Luxembourg City’s Christmas budget to be over 3 million euros, for a population of 125,000 people. According to L’essentiel, this is due to the costs of Covid-checks, barriers and security. Another factor is that local authorities try to buy some new decorations every year.

Some municipalities re-use, but COVID-19 pushes costs up

The town of Clervaux with its 5,600 inhabitants spends around 63,000 euros on Christmas decorations, with the main attraction - workshops with temporary stalls, that focus and children and fairytale writing, illustration and publication.

This portion of the holiday season costs 8,000 euros, and that is mainly because local authorities stored and re-used last year’s stalls. The other 55,000 went for lights. Thankfully, no Christmas trees were harmed in the making of Clervaux’s decorations, as they use potted pines that can be moved.

Luxembourg’s smallest town, Saeul, with 900 inhabitants, did not skimp out on decorations. On the contrary, they had a budget of 20,000 euros for lights.

Despite some efforts to re-use older decorations, many municipalities rent their lights and, according to L’essentiel, they do not intend to cut back on Christmas spending. On the contrary, they are looking to the future, when a comprehensive health plan to stop the spread of COVID-19 will no longer be a necessity and they can free up more money for decorations.

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