LARPing Mad! Middle-aged men spend £1,228 p/year on hobbies - and over £1,5573 on LARPing!

June 2015, LONDON – The rise of the MAMIL (Middle Aged Men In Lycra) has been well documented, but new research from Groupon UK shows that it’s no longer just the lycra and bikes that middle-aged men are splurging on. The average man aged 30-55 now has three hobbies, spending on average £1,228 p/year to fund their pursuits. Over a third (34 per cent) also admitted to spending more on their hobbies in a year than they do on holidays, and a quarter (25 per cent) admitting the amount of time or money they have spent on their hobbies has caused arguments with their partners.

The most expensive hobby overall was the trend for Live Action Role Playing or ‘LARPING’, where players will dress in costume and re-enact fictional events in character with other players. Whilst a niche hobby, with only 3 per cent partaking, it costs on average a whopping £1,573 p/year. Running proved the most economic hobby, costing a more modest £256 p/year.

Top five most expensive hobbies (average cost per year):

  1. Live Action Role Playing (3 per cent) – £1,573 p/year
  2. Motor biking (6 per cent)  – £1,082 p/year
  3. Mountaineering (3 per cent) – £1,008 p/year
  4. Sailing (4 per cent) – £1,007 p/year
  5. Playing rugby (4 per cent)  – £985 p/year

These male hobbyists are not taking their pursuits lightly, with over half (54 per cent) saying their hobbies last three years or more. The most popular hobbies for men aged 30-55 came with a hefty price tag:

Top five most popular hobbies and average cost per year

  1. Attending football matches (22 per cent)– £568 p/year
  2. Cycling (20 per cent)  – £260 p/year
  3. Cooking (19 per cent) – £660 p/year
  4. Gym (17 per cent) – £313 p/year
  5. Playing football (15%) – £327 p/year

Over a quarter of men (28 per cent) said their hobby was inspired by British male celebrities, citing David Beckham (7 per cent), Jamie Oliver (6 per cent), Bear Grylls (6 per cent) and Bradley Wiggins (6 per cent) as the most popular pin-ups for their pursuits.

However, keeping up these hobbies can cause problems. A quarter (25 per cent) say that the amount of time or money they have spent on their hobbies has caused arguments with their partner, with almost half (41 per cent) admitting to taking up hobbies to get some alone time, and over a quarter (26 per cent) admitting to spending the majority of their disposable income on their hobbies.

Elyas Chowdhury, MD of Groupon UK said: “This research definitely shows the passion men have for a broad range of hobbies from sailing to motor biking. It’s never too late to try something new and at Groupon, we reward your everyday curiosity”.

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