Survey: Most Americans Will Avoid Using Credit For Holiday Purchases

Holiday spending can wreak havoc on the family budget, but a new survey by Bankrate shows that most Americans have planned ahead and saved up in order to avoid using credit for holiday gifts.

According to Bankrate, 2016 holiday spending will average about $806.  Of surveyed consumers, 70 percent said they will be using cash or debit for all holiday purchases. Only 22 percent of consumers plan to utilize credit cards. However, income level and age seem to be playing a large part in consumers’ decisions.

Those earning less than $30,000 were most likely to say they would avoid credit and only spend what they have, while high-earners were most inclined to take on holiday debt. Millennials – those aged 18-29 – seem staunchly against credit cards, while older consumers were more likely to consider credit cards for holiday shopping.

While financial professionals agree it’s healthy to spend only what you have at the holidays, they also caution about the use of debit cards for online transactions. Debit card fraud happens much more easily than credit card fraud, so consumers making debit transactions online always should look for the green “secured” symbol at checkout.

The survey also showed that using smartphone “mobile wallets” to make transactions has fallen out of favor, with only 3 percent of consumers considering the tech-savvy mode of purchase.

Image via Flickr/seanmacentee