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CIBC Poll: Canadians plan to spend more money on their vacations this holiday season, but fewer of them will be travelling

Top concerns remain getting sick or injured, or losing your money or credit cards

TORONTO, Dec. 15, 2014 /CNW/ - Fewer Canadians will be travelling for the holidays this year, with those who are taking vacations planning on spending more money, finds a new CIBC (TSX: CM) (NYSE: CM) poll.

Just over one in five (22 per cent) Canadians are planning to travel on vacation during the Christmas and New Year's holiday season, down slightly from 25 per cent last year. Those who are traveling - primarily to visit family or friends or bask in warmer temperatures - plan to spend an average of $1,509 on their trip, up 3 per cent from last year. As many as 40 per cent of vacationers will be travelling outside of Canada.

"Whether you're travelling within Canada for the holidays or heading south for a vacation, it's helpful to make a checklist of everything you need to do or take with you before you go," says Steve Webster, Vice President, Travel Cards, CIBC. "There are some easy things that you can do before you travel to help make sure your vacation is worry free - like letting your credit card provider know you'll be on vacation or making sure your credit card provides the travel medical coverage that's appropriate for you."

Key findings of the poll include:

  • 22 per cent of Canadians are planning a holiday vacation in December, down from 25 per cent last year. Within this group:
    • They plan to spend on average of $1,509 on their trip, including transportation, accommodation, meals, and other activities, up from $1,462 last year
    • Half (53 per cent) of travellers this holiday season plan to stay within Canada; 34 per cent will say closer to home in their own province, 19 per cent will travel outside their province
    • Four in 10 (40 per cent) will vacation outside of Canada, including 20 per cent travelling to the US and 20 per cent heading to travel spots beyond Canada or the US
    • Visiting family or friends was the top reason for travelling for half (50 per cent) of the group; another 21 per cent indicated their primary reason to travel is to get warm

Top travel concerns

The top concerns cited by Canadians who plan to travel this holiday season include:

  • Getting sick or injured on their vacation (33 per cent)
  • Losing their money or credit cards (10 per cent)
  • Losing their luggage (8 per cent)

"Peace of mind while on vacation is important," says Mr. Webster. "It's always important for you to review the protection offered by your credit card before you leave for your vacation, in the event you need medical assistance while travelling, or if your card is lost or stolen while you are away."

Vacation checklist to ensure peace of mind:

  • Make sure you understand and update your travel protection. Many credit cards offer insurance to protect you and your family, such as travel medical, trip cancellation or interruption, flight delay, lost baggage, or car rental collision/damage.
  • Keep your passport, cash and cards secure, and have a back up form of payment. Carrying a back up payment card or cash can help if you lose your primary method of payment. Be sure to keep them separate and in secure locations, and have important phone numbers written down separately in the event you lose a credit or debit card.
  • Provide Vacation Alerts to your credit card company before you go. Advance notice to your credit card company on your travel plans can help ensure your credit card charges go through and you have use of your credit card for your vacation.
  • Access benefits and rewards from your credit cards to stretch your vacation budget further. For example, your credit card may have features such as reward points to pay for flights, hotels and other travel-related expenses, and discounts on travel-related items such as car rentals.
  • Utilize free budgeting and tracking tools. For example, the CIBC Mobile Banking App lets you track purchases in real time and with the CIBC CreditSmart tool on most credit cards you can set and track your spending, and set up Alerts that remind you when you get close to your limits.


Among Canadians surveyed, plans to travel on vacation during the December holiday season, by region:

National Average 22%
BC 26%
Alberta 25%
Man/Sask 21%
Ontario 21%
Quebec 21%
Atlantic Canada 17%


Among Canadians surveyed who are planning to take a vacation this December holiday season, average amount they plan to spend, by region:

National Average $1509
BC $1767
Alberta $1487
Man/Sask $1654
Ontario $1599
Quebec $1416
Atlantic Canada $490


Among Canadians surveyed who are planning to take a vacation this December holiday season, primary reason for travelling:

To visit family or friends 50%
To get warm 21%
To get away from the hustle and bustle of the holidays 11%
Timing works for my schedule - the kids are off school / I'm off work 9%
Other 9%


The results were gathered through a Web survey conducted by Leger from November 24 to 26, 2014 among a representative sample of 1,572 English- or French-speaking Canadians, 18 years of age or older. The margin of error—which measures sampling variability—is +/- 2.47%, 19 times out of 20.  Using data from Statistics Canada, the results were weighted according to gender, age, region, language spoken at home, education and whether or not children are present in the household to ensure a sample representative of the entire population under review.

About CIBC

CIBC is a leading Canadian-based global financial institution with nearly 11 million personal banking and business clients. Through our three major business units - Retail and Business Banking, Wealth Management and Wholesale Banking - CIBC offers a full range of products and services through its comprehensive electronic banking network, branches and offices across Canada with offices in the United States and around the world. You can find other news releases and information about CIBC in our Media Centre on our corporate website at


For further information:

Kevin Dove, 416-980-8835,