LONDON Well-meaning well-wishers could be donating far less to good causes than they think this Christmas, a survey by consumer group Which? shows.
Some 84 percent of 1,060 people it surveyed think that more than 40 percent of the price of charity Christmas cards should be donated to good causes.
But, in reality, this can be as low as just 4 percent, according to the Charities Advisory Trust.
Harrods, Cards Galore and Next are the most miserly, donating on average less than 10 percent of the price from all charity packs.
John Lewis also has a large proportion of packs with donations of less than 10 percent.
Others are far more generous. The most charitable is Waterstone's, which donates 50 percent of the price of certain packs of cards to Unicef.
Also high on the list is Clinton Cards, which gives 21 percent.
Neil Fowler, editor of Which?, says: "Many of us buy charity Christmas cards for altruistic reasons, but when as little as 4 percent goes to a good cause, we're actually donating money to the retailer.
"If you really want to make a difference, buy directly from the charity or its own shops -- or if you do buy from another retailer, make sure you check the small print."