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When it comes to winter plans down south, most Canadian snowbirds are winging it financially: CIBC Poll

73 per cent also say current economic environment may impact future ability to live abroad

TORONTO, Feb. 2, 2023 /CNW/ - A new CIBC survey finds very few Canadian snowbirds* (21 per cent) have spoken with a financial professional about their plans to live abroad during the winter months. Although some snowbirds do see the value in financial advice, most are flying solo when planning their vacation travel, despite the majority (73 per cent) being concerned (24 per cent very concerned) about the current economic environment.

"After managing through challenging pandemic-related travel conditions, many Canadians have returned to spending their winters abroad in warmer locales," said Carissa Lucreziano, Vice-President Financial and Investment Advice, CIBC. "Yet many snowbirds are faced with travel uncertainty again as interest rates and cost of living continue to climb, and they are often not seeking financial advice that can help them weather these concerns."

According to the poll, few snowbirds (7 per cent) are staying abroad at a property they own, with many opting to stay in short-term (26 per cent) or long-term (24 per cent) rental homes.

While down south, most snowbirds expect to conduct their banking digitally through their Canadian bank's mobile app or website (71 per cent) and half will withdraw foreign currency as cash before their trip (49 per cent), and most (87 per cent) say they have no plans to make large purchases while living abroad.

For those Canadians looking to become future snowbirds, some (27 per cent) plan to delay their retirement to earn more savings, while others (27 per cent) say they're cutting back on non-essential spending to help them achieve their goal.

"Whether you're already spending your winters away or are dreaming of trading snow for the beach in retirement, an advisor can help best position you, financially, for your time abroad. They can walk you through how to put your finances on autopilot to make sure all of your bills are paid on time, manage currency exchange rates, plan for medical expenses and navigate tax considerations to help make your getaway carefree and relaxing," added Lucreziano.

Other poll key findings:

  • 89 per cent of snowbirds take one trip during the year
  • 66 per cent of snowbirds spend their time in the same location vs. traveling to multiple destinations
  • 56 per cent of snowbirds spend their time in the United States
  • 54 per cent of snowbirds visit international locations (outside the United States)
  • 44 per cent of snowbirds expect to host family and friends while living abroad temporarily

Top snowbird destinations include:

  • 34 per cent stay in the Southeastern United States (e.g., Florida, Georgia, South Carolina)
  • 24 per cent stay in Mexico, Central America, South America
  • 14 per cent stay in the Southwestern United States (e.g., Arizona, Texas)
  • 14 per cent stay in the Caribbean
  • 14 per cent visit Europe

Research Poll Disclaimer:

These are some of the findings from a study by Maru Public Opinion undertaken by its sample and data collection experts at Maru/Blue December 14-23 , 2022 involving a random sample of 1,010 Canadian adults aged 50+ (74% with investable assets of $100k+) who are Maru Voice Canada online panelists. For comparison purposes, a probability sample of this size has an estimated margin of error (which measures sampling variability) of +/- 3.1%, 19 times out of 20. Respondents could respond in either English or French. Discrepancies in or between totals when compared to the data tables are due to rounding.

* Snowbirds refers to those aged 50+ who plan to live temporarily (one month or longer) in a warmer climate during the winter months, either currently or in the near future (next couple of years).

About CIBC  

CIBC is a leading North American financial institution with 13 million personal banking, business, public sector and institutional clients. Across Personal and Business Banking, Commercial Banking and Wealth Management, and Capital Markets businesses, CIBC offers a full range of advice, solutions and services through its leading digital banking network and locations across Canada, with offices in the United States and around the world. Ongoing news releases and more information about CIBC can be found at


For further information: Kira Smylie, CIBC Communications & Public Affairs, 416-980-2949 or