Updated December 24, 2013

Survey: Holiday Shopping 2013 - Men vs Women

Read more about Holiday Shopping 2013

What do women want this holiday season? Based on the results of CreditDonkey.com's annual holiday survey, they want some extra cash in their pockets when Christmas is over. Female respondents to this year's results were more likely than male respondents to predict they will spend less on gifts this year (22% vs. 17.7%). They are either tired of overspending every holiday season or are not feeling very generous this time around.

Do you plan to spend more or less money on gifts this holiday season (by gender)
Do you plan to spend more or less money on gifts this holiday season (by gender) © CreditDonkey

To pull off a tighter shopping budget, female holiday revelers will pull back their spending on electronics, movies, music and jewelry. Those are the types of gifts that women are less interested in buying other people this year, according to the 2012 and 2013 CreditDonkey surveys. Topping the presents women plan to buy others this holiday season are gift cards (71.9%), clothing (65.8%) and toys (62.2%). They also think their loved ones want sporting goods, as 27% want to give athletic equipment and related items this year, compared to 21% who wanted to buy sporting goods last year.

However, female respondents have higher expectations for what they can expect around the Christmas tree as nearly all gift categories saw a jump in what women want to receive this holiday season compared to last year. A higher percentage of female respondents this year picked clothing, electronics, movies, household goods and sporting goods than last year. More than half (54%) want to get jewelry, compared to 49% who wanted it last year.

Surprisingly the categories that saw the biggest increase in what females want to get this year were those involving formats that have drastically changed in recent years. Nearly 40% of females want music (compared to just 30% last year) while 69.5% want books (compared to only 58% in 2012). It’ll be up to their loved ones to figure out which version of these items should be given – a gift card to iTunes or an emailed receipt for an e-book just doesn’t have the same effect of a physical CD or hardcover book.

Gift cards continue to reign supreme in our survey. Nearly 80% of men chose gift cards as something they would like to receive this holiday, a slight increase over the 76% of men who said that’s what they wanted last year. However, they are still less likely to give such cards to others; 67% of men said they want to give gift cards in 2013, which is pretty much the same as last year’s survey results.

Men are less likely to give clothing (55%) and electronics (69%). They may even pull back on the standby for their favorite ladies – just 30% said they want to give jewelry this year while 32% said they wanted to give jewelry for the 2012 holiday. They may be holding out for themselves: Male respondents were more likely to say they are going to give themselves a gift for the holiday (47% compared to just 38% of the women who said they will self-gift).

At first, such a finding sounds a bit Scrooge-like, but then we remembered that those men may not be getting as much in the way of presents from the women in their lives as they have been used to in the past.

2013 Holiday Shopping Wish List

What do you want to give this holiday season (by gender)
What do you want to give this holiday season (by gender) © CreditDonkey

What do you want to receive this holiday season? (by gender)
What do you want to receive this holiday season? (by gender) © CreditDonkey

What women want to receive this holiday season versus what men want to give this holiday season (a sampling):

  • 87% of women want gift cards, only 67% of men want to give gift cards
  • 73% of women want clothing, only 55% of men want to give clothing
  • 68% of women want household goods, only 44% of men want to give household goods
  • 68% of women want homemade gifts, only 37% of men want to give homemade gifts
  • 54% of women want jewelry, only 30% of men want to give jewelry
  • 19% of women want sporting goods, but 31% of men want to give sporting goods

What men want to receive this holiday season versus what women want to give this holiday season (a sampling):

  • 81% of men want electronics, only 56% of women want to give electronics
  • 39% of men want sporting goods, only 28% of women want to give sporting goods
  • 46% of men want homemade gifts, but 62% of women want to give homemade gifts
  • 43% of men want household goods, but 55% of women want to give household goods

2012 Holiday Shopping Wish List

What do you want to give this holiday season?
What do you want to give this holiday season? © CreditDonkey

What do you want to receive this holiday season?
What do you want to receive this holiday season? © CreditDonkey

Survey Methodology

For 2013 Holiday Shopping Wishlist: from October 7, 2013 to October 11, 2013, CreditDonkey polled 1,076 Americans online, age 18 and over for their opinions and plans regarding the Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas holidays.

For 2012 Holiday Shopping Wishlist: from October 9 to October 23, 2012, CreditDonkey.com polled 1,125 Americans online, age 18 and over, about their holiday shopping plans.

Sarah Johnson is the senior editor of CreditDonkey, a credit card comparison and financial education website. Write to Sarah Johnson at sarah@creditdonkey.com. Our data-driven analysis has been recognized by major news outlets across the country and has helped families make savvy financial and lifestyle decisions. (read more)

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