Ipsos Reid

Ipsos Reid

August 03, 2006 11:00 ET

Canada Speaks: Presented By Sympatico/MSN

Most Canadians Scaling Back Long Weekend Plans Because Of High Gas Prices

Attention: Business/Financial Editor, Lifestyle Editor, News Editor, Travel/Tourism Editor, Transportation Editor TORONTO/ON--(CCNMatthews - Aug. 3, 2006) - Most Canadians Scaling Back Long Weekend Plans Because Of High Gas Prices

When It Comes To Long Weekends, Most Canadians Either Want To "Hang Out With Friends" (38%) Or "Have A Lazy Weekend" (35%)

Oprah (3%) and Celine Dion (3%) Most Popular Celebrity Choices For Potential Long Weekend Company

According to a new Canada Speaks survey released by Sympatico / MSN, most Canadians (54%) are scaling back from their usual long weekend plans this year because of higher gas prices and are likely to spend time sitting on a patio, deck or lawn chair having a drink (41%). The poll was conducted for Sympatico / MSN by Ipsos Reid.
When it comes to long weekend plans, Canadians most like to "hang out with friends" (38%), "have a lazy weekend" (35%), do some "reading" (27%), or take a trip (22%). Younger adults age 18-34 are more likely to point to things like taking in the "movies" (16%) or going "camping" (19%) versus those over age 55 who are more likely to want to "do some reading" (38%) and go to "restaurants" (19%).

So, where do Canadians like to spend their long weekends? Two-thirds of Canadians (64%) agree that "the best place to spend a long weekend is at the cottage or camping in the wilderness" (23% "strongly agree"). Many Canadians (41%) were in agreement that they "usually spend a good deal of (their) long weekends sitting on a patio, deck or a lawn chair having a drink".

When Canadians are asked an open-ended question, as to what famous person, who is still alive, they would most like to share their time with on a long weekend, the responses are wide-ranging and varied. Topping the list of most popular potential long-weekend buddies are Oprah (3%) and Celine Dion (3%), followed by Johnny Depp (2%), and Angelina Jolie (2%).

Other interesting responses offered by Canadians are:

Queen Elizabeth, Wayne Gretzky, Bill Gates, Bill Clinton, Brad Pitt, George Clooney, Stephen Harper, Madonna, Dahli Lama, Donald Trump, Jesus/God, David Suzuki, Toronto Blue Jay Alex Rios, Margaret Atwood, and Nelson Mandela.

With Canada Speaks, Sympatico / MSN is listening to its readers' opinions in order to continue providing them with the information they care most about. Canada's most popular online destination with more than 18.4 million visitors per month*, Sympatico.MSN.ca is the one online destination that provides the tools and information Canadian's need to connect with friends, family, and what's happening - in their community and around the world.

These are the findings of an Ipsos Reid poll fielded from July 12th to 16th, 2006. For the survey, a representative sample of 1056 adult Canadians were interviewed via an on-line survey vehicle. The sample used in this study has been weighted according to Census data to accurately reflect the population of Canadians. With a sample of this size, the aggregate results are considered accurate to within ±3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, of what they would have been had this entire population been polled. The margin of error will be larger within each sub-grouping of the survey population.

Most Canadians (54%) Have Scaled Back From Their Usual Long Weekend Plans Because of Higher Gas Prices
Most Canadians (54%) agree with the statement "because of the higher gas prices this year, I've had to scale back from my usual long weekend plans" (21% "strongly agree"). Just under half (46%), disagree with this statement (15% "strongly disagree").

* Those in Saskatchewan/Manitoba (64%) are the most likely to agree with this statement, followed by those in Atlantic Canada (61%), and Quebec (55%).
* Those with kids in their household are also more likely to agree with this statement (62% vs. 52% among those without kids).

Two-Thirds Agree That Best Place To Spend A Long Weekend Is At A Cottage Camping In The Wilderness…
Two-thirds of Canadians (64%) agree that "the best place to spend a long weekend is at the cottage or camping in the wilderness" (23% "strongly agree"). The remaining 36% of Canadians disagree with this statement (13% "strongly disagree").

* Agreement is highest in Alberta (72%), followed by British Columbia (68%), Atlantic Canada (68%), and Ontario (65%).
* Younger adults age 18-34 (72%) are the most likely to agree with this statement.

Many (41%) Say They Usually Spend A Good Deal Of Their Long Weekend Sitting On A Patio Or Deck With A Drink…

Four in ten Canadians (41%) agree that they "usually spend a good deal of (their) long weekends sitting on a patio, deck or a lawn chair having a drink (30% somewhat agree). A majority (59%), however, disagree with this statement (26% strongly disagree).

When It Comes To Long Weekends, Most Canadians Either Want To "Hang Out With Friends" (38%) Or "Have A Lazy Weekend" (35%)…

Younger adults, aged 18-34, are the most likely say that on long weekends they like to:

* Hang out with friends (56%);
* Take in a movie (24%); or
* Go camping (19%).

While, in comparison, adults age 55 and over are most like to want to:

* Do some reading (38%);
* Do some travelling (28%), or
* Go to restaurants (19%).

For full tabular results, please visit our website at www.ipsos.ca.

News Releases are available at: http://www.ipsos-na.com/news/

/For further information: Nicole Flippance
High Road Communications
(416) 644-2259
nflippance@highroad.com
/ IN: SPORTS

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