Gift Cards Are Now the Most Popular Gift This Holiday Season in Canada

by Dave Eason 0

Canadians are catching up with their American neighbors by choosing the open loop (bank-issued) gift card as the most popular holiday gift for the 2015 holiday survey season. While many we spoke to seemed surprised by this, they shouldn’t be. Today’s connected consumers crave the freedom to shop for what they like, wherever and whenever they like, and that flexibility is contributing to the growing popularity of open loop gift cards in Canada. This data tracks with trends seen in the United States where gift cards have dominated as the most popular gift in America for the past eight years.

The Canadian Prepaid Providers Organization (CPPO) conducted a first-of-its kind gift trends survey that looked at the preferences of Canadian consumers regarding retail gift cards, open loop gift cards and other popular gifts such as toys and electronics. Entitled What Canadians Really Want: 2015 Holiday Gift Trends, the online survey of 1,563 Canadian consumers revealed a majority of Canadians, 79 per cent, say they would like to receive an open loop gift card, allowing them to buy exactly what they want, when they want it.

Ultimately, more Canadians are wishing for the gift of choice and the flexibility that open loop gift cards offer. The survey also revealed 62 per cent of Canadians anticipate purchasing a gift card during the upcoming holiday season with 46 percent intending to purchase at least one open loop gift card.

Additional key survey findings include:

• One-third (33%) of Canadians have given, and 45% of Canadians have received, an open loop gift card as a gift

• While Canadians of all ages are equally as likely to give a gift card, millennials are the most likely to have received an open loop gift card as a gift (57%)

• Over three-quarters (78%) like the flexibility of being able to use open loop cards almost anywhere versus a retail gift card

• Over half (51%) prefer open loop gift cards because it is more secure than giving cash

The What Canadians Really Want: 2015 Holiday Gift Trends survey was conducted by Leger and commissioned by the Canadian Prepaid Providers Organization (CPPO), the voice of the rapidly growing open loop prepaid payments industry in Canada.

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