Holiday Shopping By the Numbers

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Once again, the holiday season has arrived and Canadians throughout the country will spend the next several weeks checking their lists twice to ensure that their loved ones have their hearts' desire waiting for them under the tree on Christmas morning. New numbers provide a glimpse into how holiday revelers prepare for the gift-giving season.

Holiday Shopping Infographic

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<p> Holiday Shopping By the Numbers – An infographic by the team at <a href="">Western Direct Insurance</a></p>
  • Approximately 44 percent of Canadians start their shopping months in advance of Dec. 25. Just over one-third will hold off until there are a few weeks remaining to the big day. On average, one in 10 will procrastinate, waiting until the last minute to buy gifts.

  • Even though they represent one-sixth of the year, the final two months are when retailers make most of their earnings. Roughly 25 percent of all retail sales in Canada are done in November and December. Additionally, retailers are known for offering year-end sales events, hoping to entice more consumers to shop, particularly new and used car dealerships.

  • While they may go into shopping with an idea of how much they like to spend, one-fourth of all Canadians say they expect they will go over budget. However, shoppers based in Manitoba and Saskatchewan appear to be stellar at self-discipline. Approximately 24 percent of residents in these provinces said that they will likely spend less than they originally intended, according to a recent poll.

  • Canada's biggest holiday spenders primarily are in Western Canada. It's estimated that, on average, Albertans will spend about $1,600 for gifts, while British Columbia residents will part with approximately $1,500, both higher than the national average.

Though once considered a sales event based primarily in the U.S., more Canadians take advantage of Black Friday. Roughly 85 percent are aware of the fact that the day following Thanksgiving in the U.S. is known for being a day where retailers often have discounts. In fact, last year, Canadian spending grew by 6.5 percent on Black Friday and by 23 percent on Cyber Monday. The first Monday after Thanksgiving is another retail sales event where online purchases are common.