Canadians plan to cut back on summer holidays

By Andrew Rickard | July 04 2016 11:25AM

A poll conducted for CIBC reveals that Canadians plan to reduce their expenses by 25% this summer.

On average, survey respondents plan to spend $1,346 on entertainment this summer; this includes expenses such as travel, dining, recreational activities, and purchases of summer goods like barbecues and sports equipment. This year’s budget is about 25% lower than the $1,766 average reported last year.

Impulsive spending

CIBC notes that summer is the season in which Canadians tend to make more unplanned and impulsive spending decisions, with 67% of respondents saying they splash out in the warmer months, compared to 17% who splurge in the winter, 9% in the spring, and 7% in the fall.

Household budget

The poll revealed that only 32% of Canadians are able to stick to their budget "very closely" in the summer. While 50% say they plan their expenses "somewhat", 6% said their household budget "goes out the window" when the weather warms up. The remaining 12% admitted that they do not follow a household budget at any time of the year.

Jamie Golombek, managing director at CIBC's Wealth Strategies Group, reminds families with children that summer camp expenses may represent one opportunity to save money this year.

Tax savings

"Summer camp fees often qualify for the child care expense deduction, which can lower your after-tax cost of summer camps for the kids," he says. "Also, keep in mind that 2016 will be the last year in which you can claim the 15% federal refundable Children's Fitness Credit for up to $500 of expenses and the 15% non-refundable Children's Arts Credit for up to $250 of expenses – so make sure you save your receipts for tax time."