Many Canadians have developed positive financial tendencies during COVID-19 and they plan to continue upholding these habits post-pandemic, according to a Scotiabank survey.
The report shows more than a third of Canadians (36 per cent) are planning to eliminate unnecessary spending from their lifestyle after COVID-19 and 28 per cent will continue to build their emergency savings fund.
“We’re seeing a record number of deposits in Canadians’ bank accounts which presents a huge opportunity, especially for the sectors hit hardest by the pandemic, like travel and hospitality,” D’Arcy McDonald, senior vice president of deposits, investments, and payments at Scotiabank, said in a release.
The survey highlighted the top activities Canadians are looking forward to post-pandemic, including attending large gatherings with friends and family, as well as flying outside of the country.
The potential surge in Canadians traveling abroad with their additional savings could cause concern for lawmakers, with Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland previously referring to that money as “pre-loaded stimulus” which could play a huge role in the country’s recovery from the pandemic.
The travel industry continues to experience ongoing hurdles as lockdowns limit business operations and Canadians’ ability to take trips across the country.
A report by Destination Canada found that a pivot to local travel could accelerate a recovery to pre-COVID levels for this sector by about a year.
The study also highlighted that the current situation for the travel sector is worse than the impact of 9/11, SARS and the 2008 economic crisis combined.
While some leaders such as Toronto-Dominion Bank CEO Bharat Masrani are pointing to travel incentives as a way to keep Canadian dollars at home, others such as former top finance department official Don Drummond say it’s important to start opening businesses up in order to encourage local spending.
“The obvious point is if we open things up it will ensure that the people spend the money here, it really comes back to the supply side as much as anything,” Drummond said.
“Canadians have the financial wherewithal to spend and they seem inclined to do so, we just need to accommodate that physically and that’s just getting things open.”
Scotiabank surveyed 1,517 randomly selected Canadian adults online between April 16 and April 18.