1 in 8 say loved ones with opposing COVID views won’t get holiday gifts

BELLEVUE, Wash. — If you disagree with mom or dad on COVID-19 vaccines, maybe don’t expect much in your stocking this year.

A new survey, commissioned by CoinStar, finds one in eight Americans plan on skipping holiday shopping for family and friends who do not share the same COVID-19 opinions as them.

Meanwhile, nearly two in three Americans (64%) say they’re looking forward to the holiday season this year, despite many planning on buying fewer gifts in general over budget constraints and others complaining of COVID-related uncertainty.

More specifically, 39 percent of the 2,007 respondents can’t afford to buy as many gifts as usual. Another 34 percent blame their tight holiday budget on either being unemployed or working a low-paying job. It seems not everyone is lighter in the wallet this year, though. In comparison to 67 percent in 2019, only 59 percent of Americans say they have a strict holiday budget this year.

What’s on your holiday wish list this year?

If the answer is cold hard cash, you’re not alone. Two-thirds of the poll (68%) say they prefer money over physical gifts. Speaking of cash, over half of Americans (52%) plan on using the spare change they find around the house to help fund their holiday purchases. The average American reports finding $123 in spare change around their home.

Of course, no holiday season is complete without a few recycled gifts. Nearly three in 10 (28%) plan on “re-gifting” this year and over a quarter of that group feel less guilty about it due to the pandemic.

It’s been a tough two-year stretch for most people and this survey makes it clear that many Americans are looking to this year’s holiday season for some much needed rest, relaxation, and all around joy. About a third say they’re looking forward to the holidays more so than usual and most Americans are planning on indulging in more holiday activities. Examples include baking holiday treats (80%), driving around to see holiday light displays (77%), going to holiday parties (60%), decorating a workspace or office (45%), and going caroling (32%).

Some Americans may be hesitant to give gifts over COVID disagreements, but others are doing their best to participate in the “season of giving.” In fact, 31 percent plan on donating either their time or money to a charity this year and 57 percent will give the service providers (mail carriers, trash collectors, housekeepers) in their life a holiday bonus.