When does Christmas officially start?

I've only started talking about Christmas because we have to hurry up and make our advent calendar this week!!! For me it starts Dec 1st with the advent calendar countdown. We don't have t.v, or at least, I don't have enough time on my hands to be able to sit down and watch it so for the moment, there's no Christmas in the air until we start making that calendar - and then buy a tree :) Can't wait for the tree and to get all last year's decorations out!!!

First Christmas Card arrived today(from Oz) so I guess it has started. But really it starts when the first guest comes through the door in December.

20th December would be a good start date and finish 27th. Nothing before and no mention after those dates. Free us from all the commercial hype and meaningless razzmatazz that fills the British screens and airwaves. I'd ban that song too. It makes me sound like a GOM (Grumpy Old Man)!!! I was dreading Cilla Black and the Ferrerro Rocher advert coming yet again...... but they seem to have a new one. How soon before the Summer Holiday ads appear I wonder? Or..... wait for it...... the first Easter Egg? How did we manage a childhood in the Fifties without all this?

Part of Christmas starts when I do the Xmas shopping for glacé fruit for my mother in the Xmas market the first weekend of December.

Then another part starts when we get to the UK (if we're going for Xmas).

But I think it truly starts on Xmas Eve, the precise moment being when I hear the angelic voice of a little boy starting Once in Royal David's City at the beginning of Kings College Cambridge's Nine Lessons and Carols.

Many thanks Catherine - noted ;-)

No idea but whatever hte date is it's much later here in France than in the UK - for me it starts when work and school stops, and anyway it's still November, nobody even thinks about talking about Christmas until December in France ;-) add to that the indian summer that's still here and Christams is the last thing I'm thinking about :-D

Yes !! I agree there !I feel that song has a certain" je ne sais quoi"! But why are we always surprised when there are only X days 'til Christmas, unlike Easter it always falls on the same date, yet each year one is taken unawares !! perhaps its the fact that the "marketing" Christmas always arrives before we're ready to act !

Bring out the mince pies ! You too can wassail!