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Most Canadians plan to shop local this Canada Day: Survey

New RCC survey looks at Canadian shopping intentions for the Nation’s birthday.
Thousands of people gathered in downtown to take part in Canada Day celebrations in Vancouver, Canada

Canada Day is around the corner, and with it the first licks of summer in Canada. Between stocked ice cream freezers and churning slushy machines, c-stores are a popular stop for holiday shoppers. 

With more than 56% of Canadians planning to celebrate the Nation’s birthday, new research by Caddle and the Retail Council of Canada surveyed Canadians to better understand consumers’ shopping intentions around the summer holiday. 

[Read more: “Canadians worried that inflation will impact their holiday shopping this year”]

So how do Canadians plan to shop this year? The biggest takeaway for your c-store is that nearly double (38%) of Canadians say they will make a dedicated shopping trip to buy things for Canada Day this year – versus 20% last year. 

With that spike in holiday shoppers, most consumers also say they are eager to support their local retailers this year. In fact, 87% of consumers said they preferred to shop at a local store this year, versus buying items online; a steep increase from 45.6% in 2022. 

What are Canadians buying for Canada Day? 

A whopping 85% of Canadians expect to spend more or the same amount for Canada Day this year compared to last year. About 40% of Canadians who plan to celebrate Canada Day say they plan to spend more than $50 this year. But where will they spend their holiday cash?

The top spending categories for the holiday are:

  • Food
  • Alcohol
  • Candies
  • Full-service restaurants 
  • Quick service restaurants

[Read more: "Selling summer"]

How do Canadians spend their July 1? 

This year, more than one in four Canadians said they will be having a meal to celebrate the occasion. In fact, 26.4% of Canadians said they would be hosting or joining a meal or party this year. 

Spending time in nature took the second spot, with 20.4% of Canadians saying they planned to take a nature walk on Canada Day this year. A lower percentage (15.8%) planned to ring in the occasion by watching a play/movie/television, 9.1% said they would travel outside the city and 6.2% said they planned to play sports or work out. 

Whether its with bug spray or sunscreen for your nature-loving customers, enhanced water or healthy beverages for your sporty shoppers, or popcorn and snacks for the movie lovers, make sure your c-store is stocked for the holidays.

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