“Yummy, That Was Delicious” is Canada’s Most Prevalent White Lie

More than one-in-five Canadians (21%) say they have lied about how much money they make at some point in their lives. 

Vancouver, BC [March 29, 2023] – Practically a third of Canadians have been less than honest when assessing the genuine quality of a home-cooked meal, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative national sample, 32 per cent of Canadians acknowledge having said that they enjoyed a home-cooked meal when they really did not.

Women (35%), Canadians aged 18-to-34 (also 35%) and Atlantic Canadians (40%) are more likely to admit that they misrepresented their authentic feelings about a home-cooked meal.

Just under one-in-four Canadians (24%) say they gave out a fake phone number or email address to a person they were not interested in talking to again—a proportion that rises to 29% among women.

Smaller proportions of Canadians acknowledge having lied in three other instances: sending a text message saying that they were “almost there” when they were going to be really late (22%), falsely claiming that their phone had no battery when someone attempted to contact them (21%) and failing to disclose the actual cost of something they purchased to their significant other (20%).

“There are practically no gender or age differences across Canada when it comes to withholding financial details from a significant other,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “People of all ages appear to have the same propensity to lie in this situation.”

Just under two-in-five Canadians (39%) say they have never relied on any of these five lies—including 51% of those aged 55 and over.

Canadians were also asked if they have lied to anyone about eight different topics over the course of their lives.

More than one-in-five Canadians (21%) say they have not been truthful about how much money they make, while 16% have lied about their age and 15% have fibbed about where they live.

Fewer Canadians acknowledge having lied at some point about whether they have a girlfriend or boyfriend (12%), their past job experience (10%), whether they have a wife or husband (6%), where they were born (5%) or their academic or educational credentials (also 5%).

Residents of Quebec are more likely to have lied about having a girlfriend or boyfriend (16%) than their counterparts in British Columbia (13%), Ontario (11%), Saskatchewan and Manitoba (also 11%), Alberta (8%) and Atlantic Canada (7%).

This is the second of three releases exploring the relationship of Canadians with the truth. Click here to review the findings of the first one.

Methodology: Results are based on an online study conducted from March 10 to March 12, 2023, among 1,000 Canadian adults. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error, which measures sample variability, is +/- 3.1 percentage points, nineteen times out of twenty.

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.

778.929.0490 [e] mario.canseco@researchco.ca