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When should you put your Christmas tree up – is it considered bad luck to do it early?


With the pandemic having taken over our lives over the past two years, rules no longer apply. (Picture: Getty)

With Christmas looming on the horizon, you might just be starting to feel a little festive – and given how the 2020 celebrations were scuppered by the pandemic and the lockdowns, you’d be forgiven for wanting to go all out this year.

It’s already beginning to look a lot like the festive season in high streets and other locations across the country, where Christmas lights have gone up – and chances are you may even have watched a Christmas movie or popped on a festive tune or two to get into the Yuletide spirit.

Some people got things underway even earlier this year though – such as this woman who put up her Christmas lights and decorations in September, for example – and with people concerned over whether we might have another festive lockdown, it’s no surprise that they want to get the celebrations in.

So, you’re wondering when it’s officially acceptable to put your Christmas tree up, or whether it’s unlucky to do it early, we’ve got everything you need to know.

When should you put up and take down your Christmas tree?

Tradition dictates that Christmas trees should be put up at the beginning of Advent – the fourth Sunday before Christmas – which this year falls on November 28.

It was previously deemed unlucky to put your tree up prior to this date, but other traditions claim erecting your tree more than 12 days before Christmas is unlucky, too.

Meanwhile, Roman Catholic tradition states that the tree shouldn’t put up until the afternoon of Christmas Eve.

However, putting your decorations up early can extend the excitement of the season and psychoanalysts have found it can have a positive effect on people’s moods.

Our advice? Crack out the decorations whenever you feel like it.

Christmas decorations are already up on Oxford Street in London, but the light switch on is pending (Picture: Matthew Chattle/Barcroft Media via Getty)

As for taking your tree down, this should traditionally be done on January 5 or 6, on what is known as the Twelfth Night.

In Christianity, Christmas celebrations last 12 days, although some count the days from Christmas Day and others on Boxing Day, which is why the final day is contested.

Tradition dictates that having decorations up after this date is unlucky.

And then of course, some people just keep their decorations up all year round.

How long do Christmas trees last?

With a little bit of care, a real pine tree can last for over four weeks, which means you’ll want to wait a bit before buying yours in.

The British Christmas Tree Growers Association (BCTGA) recommend buying trees at the beginning of December.

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Is it unlucky to put your Christmas tree up early?

Traditionally Christmas trees and decorations were not put up until Christmas Eve – and in the past having the tree up earlier or later than these dates was considered bad luck.

Nowadays, most people put their decorations up far earlier without any consequence.


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