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Russians plan to spend on average $170 for New Year celebrations — survey

Russians plan to spend the vast portion of the sum for presents (4,200 rubles) and holiday feast (3,900 rubles)

MOSCOW, December 26. /TASS/. Russians’ planned average New Year spending declined by more than 3,000 rubles ($50) compared to the previous holiday and now stands at almost 10,500 rubles (about $170 at the current exchange rate), according to a survey by the Russia Public Opinion Research Center VTsIOM, obtained by TASS on Thursday.

Presents and merrymaking

"On the eve of year 2020, expected spending on holidaymaking and entertainment declined by 24%: the average sum is 10,478 rubles (down from 13,755 rubles last year)," the survey says.

Russians plan to spend the vast portion of the sum for presents (4,200 rubles) and holiday feast (3,900 rubles). They also plan to spend about 2,400 rubles ($68) for entertainment, such as theatre tickets, a dinner out or holiday events for kids.

About one quarter of Russians plan to offer sweets, spirits and delicacies as presents (25%), but only 7% expect are looking forward to receive them. Other popular presents include souvenirs (22%), toys (21%), perfume and cosmetics (21%) and money (14%). A total of 17% plan to make no holiday presents at all.

Russians named a tour package (11%), theater or concert tickets (10%) or money (10%) as their most desired present. One third of respondents said they do not want any presents at all.

Almost 80% of Russians plan to celebrate the New year at home, while 68% said they would stay at home during New Year holidays (January 1-8) as well.

"Home remains a traditional place to spend the New Year’s Eve, with 78% of respondents planning to do so in 2020. 6% will visit their relatives or friends," the survey reads. "Only 7% of respondents said they will not celebrate the holiday at all."

"What do Russians plan to do during the New Year holidays? Mostly, they plan to visit their friends and relatives (30%), walk outside (23%), or do some recreational sports, such as skating, skiing or tobogganing. Moreover, every fifth (21%) Russian said he or she plans to work during this period, and one third (36%) will spend their holiday vacation at home," VTsIOM said.

According to the pollster, Russians commonly associate New Year with holidays/festivities (24%), joy (18%), hope for the better (15%), Christmas tree (14%), relatives and friends (11%). Only 2% of Russians have no associations at all.

When asked what politician they would like to see at their New Year’s table, nearly one fourth of Russians (22%) said they would like to invite President Vladimir Putin.

"12% named [LDPR party leader] Vladimir Zhirinovsky and 4% - [Russian Prime Minister] Dmitry Medvedev," VTsIOM said.

Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Communist Party leader Gennady Zyuganov were each named by 3% of respondents. 2% said they would like to invite the A Just Russia party leader Sergei Mironov. Multiple answers (up to five names) were possible.

However, the majority of respondents (47%) said they would not invite anyone. 11% had no answer.

Results and expectations

Most Russians feel joy, calmness and confidence on the eve of the New Year, and expect positive changes.

"On the eve of 2020, 55% of respondents feel joy and expect positive changes, 24% are calm and confident. As year 2019 nears its end, every fifth Russian feels tired (20%) and every tenth (10%) is anxious. Also, 10% of Russians feel sad and 8% - disappointed," the survey says.

When asked how the outgoing year felt for them and their family, the majority of respondents (47%) said it was mostly good, 33% said it was mostly difficult, 12% - bad and very difficult.

The majority of Russians believe that 2019 was "mostly difficult" for Russia. 30% said it was mostly good, 15% - bad and very difficult, and 4% - very successful.

Nearly half of respondents (49%) believe the coming year would be mostly good for them and their families, while 21% expect it to be quite successful. 23% of Russians believe it will be mostly difficult and 3% think it will be very bad.

Speaking about their general expectations for the country, 37% of Russians believe that year 2020 will be mostly good, while 38% expect difficulties. 16% of respondents expect the coming year to be quite successful for Russia, but 5% have a polar opinion, saying that the coming year would be very bad.

The telephone-based survey was conducted by VTsIOM-SPUTNIK in November-December 2019. It involved 1,600 stationary and mobile phone numbers, picked up by the two-staged stratified random sampling method from the full list of phone numbers in Russia. With the possibility of 95%, the margin of error does not exceed 2.5%.