Canadians More Stressed Over Holiday Season Than Last Year

Two thirds of Canadians prefer “Merry Christmas” as a greeting, down nine points since 2018.

Vancouver, BC [December 20, 2019] – While half of Canadians expect a relatively easy-going December, three-in-ten believe this time of the year will bring tension, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative national sample, 50% of Canadians say they expect the current holiday season to be “more fun than stressful”, down seven points since a similar survey conducted in 2018.

Conversely, 30% of Canadians (+5) believe the holiday season will be more stressful than fun, and 20% are undecided.

“More than one third of Canadians aged 35-to-54 (36%) are foreseeing more tension than entertainment this month,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “British Columbia is ahead of all other regions on the expectations of a fun holiday season (60%), while Alberta and Atlantic Canada have the lowest numbers (45% and 44% respectively).”

Across the country, 65% of Canadians (-9 since 2018) say “Merry Christmas” is their preferred greeting for the season, while 18% (+4) say “Happy Holidays” is their favourite.

“Merry Christmas” remains extremely popular with Canadians aged 55 and over (73%), residents of Saskatchewan and Manitoba (75%) and Conservative Party voters in this year’s federal election (also 75%).

Conversely, the groups that express the highest penchant for “Happy Holidays” are Canadians aged 18-to-34 (26%) and Quebecers (31%).

There is a sizeable change in the way Canadians are feeling about spirituality compared to 2018. Across the country, 48% of Canadians claim that religion is “very important” or “moderately important” in their daily lives—a 10-point increase since 2018.


Results are based on an online study conducted from December 2 to December 6, 2019, among 1,000 adults in Canada. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region in Canada. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is plus or minus 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

Find our full data set here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.