And as many as one-in-six employees, around two million workers, will hook up with a colleague, or someone in a different department. Experts predict even bosses and executives will flirt or even have an affair – with one in five employees looking forward to getting up close with their line manager.
The study of 3,000 members of married dating site Ashley Madison found women were four times more likely to cheat with the boss than men.
Psychotherapist and relationship expert Lucy Beresford explained: “The Christmas Party is a massive aphrodisiac.
“Partly this is because of situational factors, such as alcohol consumption or slow music on the dance floor.
“But it’s also because of pent-up demand for passion and romance.
“This is due not just to the pandemic but also to the way in which colleagues often become objects of lust.
“People we work with often share our values or interests, and we get to know them over a prolonged period of time.
“Co-workers are often off limits romantically because of rules in the workplace.
“But then the Christmas party beckons and people get tempted to take the risk and put their intimate or sexual needs first.”
The study found 33 percent admitted flirting at office Xmas parties, while 67 percent have kissed another worker.
Meanwhile, 11 percent have enjoyed a long, slow dance with a colleague while 67 percent who had a fling with one then went on to sleep with them.
More than half (56 percent) said a long build-up of sexual tension was the catalyst, while 22 percent blamed the fact they had been drinking.
Incredibly, 78 percent did not regret their actions – while one-in-five admitted enjoying a romantic clinch while their own spouse was at the same party.
A festive party fling can often be the start of a longer lasting romance with 44 per cent carrying on seeing a co-worker after Christmas.
Only one in ten (11 percent) said they never saw or spoke to each other again.
Christoph Kraemer, of Ashley Madison, added: “The office Christmas party season is likely to trump Freedom Day.
“According to our study, double the number of people who hooked up with a colleague last year will do so this year.
“Months of home working has left a lot of pent-up energy and desire.”