Americans not in the holiday mood

by John Zogby

Thirty-nine percent of Americans are less “in the mood” to celebrate the holidays this season than they were last year, nearly twice as many as say they are more in the mood (21%), a new Zogby Interactive poll shows.

Another 40% say there is no difference in their mood to celebrate the holidays this year compared to last year.

No matter what their mood, holiday shopping is on the agenda, and many Americans are choosing debit over credit to fund their gift-giving this year.

Debit cards are the most popular form of payment, with 37% saying they will use a debit card to pay for the majority of holiday purchases, and cash and credit cards each chosen by 27%. Checks are now the primary payment choice of just 2%.

Other survey results included:

  • When given choice of doing all holiday shopping online or at a mall, 61% chose the Internet and 23% said they would prefer the mall.
  • 69% of Americans say they plan to purchase holiday gifts online this year.
  • tops other online retailers, with 60% of online shoppers planning to shop there. Others plan to shop online at Wal-Mart (24%), eBay (21%), Target (19%), specialty clothing retailers (19%), Best Buy (15%), JC Penney (11%) and L.L. Bean (10%). Other choices provided all has less than 10%.
  • Americans overwhelmingly say it is better to give than receive gifts—when given the choice of only giving or only receiving holiday gifts, 85% say they would rather give gifts—just 8% said they would rather receive them.

This interactive survey of 3,072 adults nationwide was conducted December 8-10, 2009. A sampling of Zogby International’s online panel, which is representative of adult Americans, was invited to participate.

Slight weights were added to region, party, age, race, religion, gender, and education to more accurately reflect the population. The margin of error is +/- 1.8 percentage points. Margins of error are higher in sub-groups.

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