Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

No Frosty for more of us this Christmas

  • Print

SANTA will need to make a big detour if he wants to deliver gifts to some Manitoba families this Christmas.

A growing number of local families are planning to spend the holiday season on a beach, one local travel agent says.

"We're seeing a lot of families who are taking their entire families on a Mexican... or Caribbean holiday," Mary Jane Hiebert, general manager of Steinbach's Holiday Travel Inc. and vice-chairwoman of the Association of Canadian Travel Agents said in an interview.

"I would say they (holiday-season bookings) are up 10 per cent this year, and that's a pretty decent number."

Hiebert said Christmas getaways are particularly enticing for teachers and their families because they can escape for up to two weeks without missing any classes.

A Bank of Montreal official said she's also hearing of more families heading somewhere warm this Christmas.

"A lot of people are treating that as their Christmas gift, instead of traditional gifts," Laura Parson, a BMO personal finance expert, said.

"You can use your Air Miles and that takes a lot of the burden off of the cost of your flight. I've had lots of people telling me they're getting their flight for free."

A BMO holiday-spending survey released Wednesday also points to a spike in holiday-travel spending this year. The survey found Manitoba/Saskatchewan residents plan to spend about 15.5 per cent more this Christmas than in 2012 -- an average of $1,481 versus an average of $1,282.

And one of the biggest increases will be in travel spending, which is expected to jump by 31 per cent to an average of $539 from an average of $411.

Spending on entertainment is also expected to increase by 35 per cent to an average of $223 from an average of $165.

The only area where Manitoba/Saskatchewan residents indicated they plan to spend a little less this year is on gifts -- an average of $635 versus $645 last year.

While that could be seen as bad news for local retailers, the general manager of Winnipeg's largest regional mall -- Polo Park Shopping Centre -- said she's not worried.

"We're anticipating another good season," Deborah Green said Thursday, noting sales and traffic in the mall have already started to pick up and there isn't even any snow on the ground.

"It can be freezing cold, but until they (Manitoba shoppers) see snow on the ground -- that's what gets them thinking about Christmas."

Green said the Christmas shopping season here usually gets underway after Remembrance Day, and kicks into high gear with the Black Friday sales events on the last weekend in November.

murray.mcneill@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition November 8, 2013 B6

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Key of Bart - Evil Las Vegas

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • A golfer looks for his ball in a water trap at John Blumberg Golf Course Friday afternoon as geese and goslings run for safety- See Joe Bryksa’s 30 day goose challenge- Day 24– June 15, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)
  • A monarch butterfly looks for nectar in Mexican sunflowers at Winnipeg's Assiniboine Park Monday afternoon-Monarch butterflys start their annual migration usually in late August with the first sign of frost- Standup photo– August 22, 2011   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

What do you think of the new school-zone speed limit?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google