Consumer Reports Poll: Booze Tops List of Least Desired Holiday Gifts

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30 percent of holiday shoppers have yet to do any gift shopping as of early December

And for those who inevitably will find themselves in need of a last-minute gift, go with wine if it has to be alcohol.

Holiday shoppers who think that alcohol makes a perfect last-minute gift might want to think again. One quarter of Americans said hard liquor (spirits such as whiskey, rum, vodka, brandy, etc.) was the gift they least desired this holiday season, according to a new Consumer Reports poll. However, wine was comparatively much more acceptable: only 6 percent said they didn’t want to receive that.

The list of holiday gifts Americans said they’d least like to receive include:

  •     Spirits (25 percent)
  •     Flowers/plants (23 percent)
  •     Home décor (13 percent)
  •     Books (8 percent)
  •     Kitchen items (7 percent)
  •     Wine (6 percent)
  •     Clothes (6 percent)
  •     Food (5 percent)

The Consumer Reports poll also revealed that 30 percent of holiday shoppers have yet to do any gift shopping at all as of early December. Of those who have started shopping, one in ten have completely finished, while 27 percent are three-quarters of the way there, 25 percent are half done, and 35 percent have completed at least one-quarter of their gift shopping.

“This year it appears we have the usual amount procrastinators who haven’t started their shopping with just a few weeks to go,” said Tod Marks, Consumer Reports senior editor and resident shopping expert. “And for those who inevitably will find themselves in need of a last-minute gift, go with wine if it has to be alcohol.”

Additional results from the Consumer Reports poll can be found at ConsumerReports.org.

When it comes where Americans will be doing their holiday shopping, 19 percent plan to shop more online this year vs. last year, 50 percent said about the same, while 9 percent plan to do less online shopping this year. Also, amid some controversy over retailers who opened their doors on Thanksgiving Day, 17 percent of shoppers did hit the stores at some point on the holiday. Eighty-three percent did not.

Consumer Reports Poll Methodology
The Consumer Reports National Research Center designed a survey to explore general sentiment and shopping behaviors for the upcoming 2014 winter holiday season. In December 2014, GfK Custom Research administered the survey online to a nationally representative sample of over 1,500 randomly selected adult U.S. residents who said they planned to shop for the holidays. The data were statistically weighted so that respondents in the survey were demographically and geographically representative of the U.S. population. The margin of error is +/- 2.9 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. Fifty-four percent of the sample was female, and the median age was 47 years old.

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