This year, the rising cost of inflation is taking a toll on Canadian spending habits, especially this Valentine’s Day season. According to a 2024 survey, only 39 per cent of Canadians intend on celebrating Valentine’s Day this year—a nearly 10 per cent drop from last year.
A total of 83 per cent of those who are planning to celebrate the holiday are planning to spend the same amount or more than last year on festivities, with more than half planning to spend more than $50.
Marketing firm Caddle partnered with the Retail Council of Canada (RCC) to gather data by surveying Canadians from coast to coast to “better understand consumers’ shopping intentions around Valentine’s Day,” according to their survey conducted in January 2024 with a sample of 8,882 Canadian adults.
Manitoba Chambers of Commerce President and Chief Executive Officer Chuck Davidson speaks on the implications of today’s rising prices. “People are going to be more cost-conscious in terms of how much money they have available to spend and what they’re going to be willing to spend as well.”
Since inflation escalated in early 2021, Canadians have long struggled to keep up with the country’s rising prices. In April 2022, three out of 10 Canadians expressed concern about whether they could afford housing or rent while almost three in four Canadians reported that rising prices impacted their ability to meet daily expenses.
Today, Canada’s inflation rates increased from 3.1 per cent in November to 3.4 per cent in December. One source of financial strain is also the cost of housing, which rose six per cent in December compared to last year, generating a lot of inflationary pressure for Canadians.
The drop in demand and increase in costs are creating a financial storm for firms that are forced to raise the prices of their products. Constance Menzies, owner of Chocolatier Constance Popp in Winnipeg and winner of numerous entrepreneurial awards, reports that “an increase in [the cost of] every single type of ingredient” purchased by her store adds up, resulting in price hikes that are “uncomfortable for everybody.”
Caddle’s survey reveals this year’s top spending categories for those celebrating Valentine’s Day will be food, alcohol, candies, and restaurants at 57.5 per cent.
In addition to Canadians, Americans are also feeling the pressure of rising inflation costs. According to a 2024 survey by WalletHub, 46 per cent of Americans say inflation is taking a toll on their Valentine Day’s plan. Like Canadians, the most common gift will be candies with 57 per cent of Americans planning to buy treats this Valentine’s Day.
The growing cost of inflation is breaking hearts this season and putting strain on not just Canadians but American consumers as well. Among the 200 respondents, WalletHub’s survey revealed 24 per cent of Americans don’t anticipate their partner to spend any money on a gift during this holiday.
Associate News Editor (Volume 50) — Samuel is a first-year student at UTM working towards an Economics degree. He previously worked with the Federation of Canadian Secondary Students as a writer in the Demystify Tribune and will be continuing his exploration into writing and journalism as an Associate Editor with The Medium. When he's not drawing graphs or outlining essays, Samuel can be found playing the piano and drums, working out, or critiquing film.