How big is Santa's workshop? Let's calculate

By David Brooks for the Concord (N.H.) Monitor

Dec 22, 2015

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How big is Santa’s workshop?

Find yourself an old envelope and we’ll do some calculating on its back.

First, I estimate that one-third of the world’s population celebrates Christmas with presents. That’s 2.4 billion people, roughly half of whom are children, so let’s say 1.2 billion presents must be built over the course of the year. (We’ll restrict Santa to one present per kid.)

Santa is a nice employer, not a naughty one, so his elves work a 50-week year and 40-hour weeks. That’s 2,000 work hours a year, which means 600,000 presents have to be built each hour.

Elves are talented, so it takes an average of one hour to build each present, whether it’s a doll that talks or an iPhone app. So the workshop needs room for 600,000 elves working side by side.

How does that translate into square footage? Read the full story at for the answer.