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Survey Conveys Improved Attitudes About the 2021 Holiday Season Thanks to Vaccinations, Increased Financial Savings and Online Gift Giving

Chicago, IL (November 2021) After 20 months, Americans are anxious and excited to spend time with family and friends this holiday season, and vaccination status may define how and with whom they spend the holidays. The 2021 DrawNames Consumer Insights Survey reveals just how Americans are feeling about the holidays, if they intend to celebrate or not, what they plan to spend and how they will shop for gifts. It shows that people (59%) generally feel really good about the holidays this year compared to just 38% trying to keep the holiday spirit in 2020.


“Last year, we really wanted to gauge how Americans were feeling about the holidays and the potential of being separated from loved ones. How would they celebrate while social distancing,” said Arjan Kuiper of DrawNames, “This year, we were interested to see if the online shopping trends would continue and to understand how, or if, Covid-19 is impacting their holidays again. What we learned is very interesting.”


The Impact of Vaccination Status


While the great vaccination debate continues in the U.S., people are anxious to spend the holidays together this year over another video conference as many did in 2020. However, it is not without some concern of personal safety and the safety of loved ones.


Sixty-four percent of survey respondents who normally celebrate the holidays each year believe that the vaccination status of friends and family is important to their decision as to whether or not to share the holiday with others.


This shows that Americans may feel safer knowing their family and friends are vaccinated for the safety of all, but also a much more enjoyable time together at parties, dinners and gift exchanges.


Pandemic Savings & Holiday Splurges


It’s no surprise that a lot of participants reported having a good year financially – saving money or stimulus payments (72%), 51% reported they received a pay raise, and 35% said they saved money on commuting to work. The group that saved the most are those aged 35-44 (80%) and individuals 54+ (70%).

Roughly 73% say they plan to use the money they saved to splurge on gifts for their partner, then their children/grandchildren and finally themselves.

These splurges include:

  • Vacation/travel 74%

  • New car 58%

  • Designer clothing and accessories 53%

  • Jewelry 52%


In general, most people agreed that they just want to spend more to make the holidays extra special this year. A majority of respondents plan to spend up to $500 total on gifts with 53% expressing that this is more than they spent last year.




Thanks to the pandemic and expansion of direct online shipping, people seem to have become more comfortable with the digital convenience. A majority of those surveyed (25+) said they plan on conducting most of their shopping online primarily through Amazon and Walmart and doing so earlier due to concerns about gifts arriving on time.


Also interesting was that 53% of respondents draw names online for their Secret Santa, compared to only 22% last year.  Sixty-six percent of respondents plan on using an app this year for drawing names. This percentage includes the use of the new DrawNames App that released in October.




About the Survey

The survey was conducted with a random group of 1000 participants from 49 states and the District of Columbia. Roughly 54% of participants were men and 46% women predominantly age 25-54 and included a decent sampling of 18–24-year-old and adults 54 years and older. To view the full survey and its results, including personal responses from participants, please find it here.



About DrawNames 

For more than 10 years, DrawNames has helped millions of people – companies, friends and families – organize their free online gift exchanges. The service allows groups to create a gift exchange for any occasion, drawing names without the hassle of a hat. The 100% touchless, virtual gift exchange includes an Auto Name Generator, ability to create an online wish list, a gift finder and the ability to exchange wish lists or find the perfect gift through anonymous questions. Millions of people rely on DrawNames to simplify their Secret Santa gift exchange whether it be for Christmas, New Year’s Eve, Hanukkah, Eid al-Fitr, Easter, Kwanzaa, Diwali or Valentine’s Day.

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