Consumers Feel Safe about Shopping But Not about Spending Money

Consumers Feel Safe about Shopping But Not about Spending Money

November 19, 2020         Written By Heaven Speirs

In recent weeks, the U.S. set record highs for new coronavirus cases. The holiday shopping season is rapidly approaching, and looks very different than ever before. Stores are spreading out Black Friday deals across the month of November, and 70% of small businesses have made ecommerce their primary earning focus.

How are Americans feeling now that we’re eight months into the pandemic? Are they any better off than they were back in March?

Study Shows Most Americans Feel Safe Shopping in Stores

According to research from Deloitte, 61% of adults in the United States feel safe going into a store. Slightly over half of survey participants feel safe with in-person interactions, such as going to the hair or nail salon. Significantly fewer Americans feel safe taking a flight (33%) or attending large events (25%), and 29% said they worried about physically returning to their place of work.

In April, only 34% of Deloitte survey participants said they felt safe going into a store. Yet health concerns have barely diminished since the pandemic began. In April, 64% of adults expressed concern about their family’s health. That number currently sits at 61%.

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Americans Remain Concerned about Financial Security

Even if Americans are now more willing to go into stores, they aren’t confident about spending money. In April, 24% were worried about covering upcoming bills. Now, 29% are unsure if they can make upcoming payments.

Financial fears have been prominent throughout the pandemic. In May, doxo found that 82% of adults were worried about making ends meet, and 59% weren’t sure how they would cover their household and utility bills. In September, Finicity reported that 73% of households making below $50,000 annually had a hard time keeping up with their bills.

Should You Shop in Person during the Holidays?

We can’t tell you how or where to spend your money, but one study over the summer showed a correlation between in-person spending and COVID-19 cases. Researchers from JPMorgan found a higher peak in coronavirus cases in areas where in-person spending was strong, comparing data from John Hopkins University and 30 million Chase cardholders.

If you are going to shop in person, here are some tips to protect yourself and others:

  • Use contactless payments, if possible. Cash and dipped cards are more likely to transmit germs than mobile wallets or contactless cards.
  • Maintain social distancing while shopping in person. Consider shopping during the least crowded times of the day, such as early afternoon or late in the evening.
  • Sanitize your hands when you leave the store. Wash your hands thoroughly when you get home.
  • Consolidate your shopping trips to reduce your interactions. Make a detailed list of everything you need, and condense it into as few trips as possible.
  • Use the “one shopper per family” rule. Instead of taking the whole family on a shopping adventure, send one person to do the shopping. This cuts down on the crowds and reduces your risk of exposure.

This year has certainly challenged the way Americans shop, save and prioritize their spending. If you’re struggling right now, know you’re not alone.

The information contained within this article was accurate as of November 19, 2020. For up-to-date information on any of the terms, cards or offers mentioned above, visit the issuer's website. Many of the offers on this article are from our affiliate partners, and LowCards.com may be compensated if you take action with any of our affiliate partners.

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heaven

About Heaven Speirs

Heaven Speirs is a contributing writer for LowCards.com. She remains up-to-date with the latest developments in the credit card industry and the financial sector as a whole. Heaven has over 10 years of experience in online journalism, the bulk of which has been focused on personal finance. Heaven attended Oklahoma State University, where she discovered her talent for research and content creation. In her spare time, Heaven enjoys painting, playing poker, and spending time with her husband and three dogs.