Men More Likely Than Women to Finish Their Holiday Shopping Early and Start Late, Study Finds

September 19, 2018, 7:21 PM UTC

Men are often stereotyped as forgetful and lazy when it comes to gift giving, particularly during the winter holiday season. While statistics back that up, they also show some men are proactive early birds when it comes to shopping, too.

According to a study done by CompareCards, a website owned by LendingTree for researching and applying for credit cards, men are three times likelier than women to have finished their holiday shopping prior to Labor Day. At the same time, men are twice as likely to start late, as 7% said they will start shopping after December 15 and only 3% of women said the same.

The study surveyed more than 1,000 credit card holders in the United States on their holiday shopping and debt for the 2018 season. It resulted in findings regarding the timing of shopping, total money that will be spent, and habits of people with different wealth levels, genders, and political views.

Overall, 1 in 7 U.S. credit card holders had finished or were close to finishing their holiday shopping at the time of the study (September 6-7), with just over 100 days until Christmas. About 39% of those surveyed won’t start shopping until Thanksgiving has come and gone.

Unsurprisingly, people with more disposable income, making more than $100,000 a year, are more likely to be done with their shopping. About 37% of people making north of that are finished, while only 5% making less are done. Wealthier and more educated survey respondents were more likely to spend their money online, as well.

Americans as a whole are almost evenly split on their preferences for shopping online or in-store. About 26.5% prefer to shop online, while 27.1% shop more often in brick and mortar stores.

Only 21% of people surveyed said they expect to spend less money this holiday season than last, while 37% expect to spend more. Once the gifts are bought and the debt has been accrued, 54% of American credit card holders will pay off their balance within a month. And 8% will take eight months or more to pay their holiday debt off.

Republicans are most likely to spend more money this year than last, at 39%. About 34% of Democrats and 31% of Independents said the same.