Wave of summer spending anticipated: CPA Canada survey

A new survey conducted for Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada) finds that almost half (46 per cent) of the respondents plan to spend more this summer when compared with the same season a year ago.

TORONTO, June 30, 2015 – A new survey conducted for Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada) finds that almost half (46 per cent) of the respondents plan to spend more this summer when compared with the same season a year ago.

A cropped image of the CPA Canada Summer Spending Infographic

“Many Canadians appear ready to dip into their wallets over the summer months,” says Cairine Wilson, vice-president, corporate citizenship, CPA Canada. “Summer is a wonderful time of year but all that fun in the sun can easily be a distraction when it comes to managing your finances. Tracking your spending can help put you at ease so the summer season can be truly enjoyed.”

Additional key survey findings found that roughly four-in-ten (39 per cent) of the respondents expect to spend the same amount as in 2014 and 15 per cent anticipate spending less.  

The survey revealed that summer is the time of year when the respondents spend the most amount of money. Summer was cited by 39 per cent of the survey participants, followed by winter (34 per cent), spring (10 per cent) and fall (seven per cent). The remainder either said there was no difference or they did not know.

Looking at summer spending in comparison with other times in the year, there are three categories where an anticipated increase is the top response among survey participants. Yard work/gardening costs/home maintenance; travel or vacation costs and food costs.

Other categories explored were entertainment costs, home renovation costs, transportation, clothing and the heating and cooling of the home.

Summer vacations

Looking at vacation spending, 40 per cent of respondents expect to spend more this summer than in 2014. Thirty-six per cent project their vacation spending to remain the same and 23 per cent are predicting a dip.

In terms of destinations, more than one could be listed and the top three are: Within your province/territory (67 per cent), in another province/territory (36 per cent) and the United States (31 per cent).

To pay for the vacations, a number of avenues are being used. Survey respondents were allowed to provide more than one response and most (77 per cent) are using their general savings. More than half (54 per cent) are using savings set aside for a vacation, 22 per cent are using a portion of their tax refund and eight per cent are borrowing money.

“It’s great that so many of the respondents are using avenues other than debt to help cover the costs associated with their vacations,” says Wilson. “Not only is it encouraging from a money management perspective, but it also allows the vacationers to relax more and worry less about the costs.”


The 2015 CPA Canada Summer Spending Survey was conducted by Nielsen via telephone between June 4 and June 8, 2015 with a national random sample of 1,005 adult Canadians aged 18 years and over and is considered accurate to within ± 3.1 per cent, 19 times out of 20.  A survey summary report is available online at cpacanada.ca/summerspending. Note: The summary report contains a breakdown of the anticipated spending projections of the respondents. In some categories, the findings do not add up to 100 per cent because of rounding.

About CPA Canada

Canada’s accounting profession is uniting under a new single designation, Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA). The profession’s national body, Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada), represents and supports more than 190,000 members across the country. CPAs are valued for their financial and tax expertise, strategic thinking, business insight, management skills and leadership. CPA Canada has consolidated the operations of three national accounting bodies: The Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants, the Certified General Accountants Association of Canada and The Society of Management Accountants of Canada. CPA Canada conducts research into current and emerging business issues and supports the setting of accounting, auditing and assurance standards for business, not-for-profit organizations and government. It also issues guidance on control and governance, publishes professional literature and develops certification and continuing education programs.

For more information, contact:

Tobin Lambie
Principal, Media
CPA Canada

T: 416-204-3228
C: 647-302-3761

Diana Sorace
Manager, Media Relations
CPA Canada

T: 604-694-6700
C: 604-551-4487 dsorace@cpacanada.ca