How Canadians spent their money on Christmas gifts

Xmas purchase trends

A new survey shows how COVID-19 may have affected Canadians' shopping habits this holiday season, trending both toward online shopping and spreading the love to local businesses. 

Field Agent Canada surveyed 602 Canadians via its mobile app on Dec. 24 and 25 to explore shopping patterns. 

According to their findings, 52 per cent of total gift spending was spent online, with delivery made direct to the purchaser's home. 

This high volume resulted in trouble for mail carriers like Canada Post, FedEx and UPS. 

"Thirty-eight per cent of shoppers who bought gifts online had at least one gift not delivered on time for Christmas," said Jeff Doucette, general manager of Field Agent Canada.

"It seems like the logistics system was just not able to keep up with the flood of volume that online shoppers created in the weeks leading up to Christmas." 

A further 10 per cent of gift spending was also online, but for pickup in-store. 

"This buy online and pickup in-store model allowed shoppers to track down inventory and avoid going in-store with many retailers offering curbside pickup options." said Doucette.

"It also avoided your gift being stuck in a Canada Post depot on Dec. 25 instead of being under the tree."

But Canadians also indicated through the survey that total spending at local stores was at 23 per cent. 

"Local retailers have been hard hit during two waves of COVID lockdowns and many Canadians have stepped in to make sure that small retailers can survive and thrive this Christmas," said Doucette.

And finally, 11 per cent of spending went to gift cards. 

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