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Siena poll: New Yorkers planning to spend more on holiday gifts this year

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Nearly a quarter of New Yorkers surveyed recently in a Siena College poll plan to spend more money on holiday gifts this year, compared to last year.

The survey showed that 22% of state residents plan to spend more this year, which is up from 17% who planned to spend more in 2021.

Don Levy, director of the Siena College Research Institute, said there may be a couple of factors at play here.

“Some of that might be because items are a little bit more expensive,” Levy said. “But despite the fact that more New Yorkers say that their economic situation has actually declined over the last year, excitement and intent to spend on holiday gifts is clearly up this holiday season.”

The poll showed that 73% of New Yorkers are either very or somewhat excited about the holiday season, compared to 65% a year ago, which is the highest level of holiday excitement that Siena has registered in 15 years of asking that question.

This year’s survey showed that nearly half of all New Yorkers plan to spend more than $500 on gifts this year. But it’s not all about the presents. The Siena Poll also shows that when asked which holiday traditions New Yorkers are most looking forward to, 73% of them said spending time with family tops the list for them.

In terms of where people shop, although online shopping has obviously made big gains in recent years, Levy said the number of New Yorkers surveyed this year was pretty similar to last year. The survey showed that nearly 50% of New Yorkers plan to conduct at least half of all their holiday shopping online.

But Levy said plenty of us will be shopping at traditional brick-and-mortar locations.

“Sizable number of New Yorkers, two-thirds, say they’re going to be out there shopping in local retailers. And about 35% of us say that we’re going to be shopping for experience gifts. So, things like concert tickets, sporting event tickets, maybe a gift certificate for a spa,” Levy said.

Randy Gorbman is WXXI's director of news and public affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online.