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Singles Not Splurging on Holiday Gifts for Dates

( - November 24, 2003) MatchMaker has announced results of a recent survey of American singles showing that with the official start of the holiday shopping season just days away, retailers shouldn't rely on American singles to dole out serious dough for someone they are casually seeing.

A majority of singles (84%) feel that under $50 is an appropriate amount of money to spend on a gift for someone they recently started dating.

Nearly half of all respondents feel that under $25 would be fine. Of these, nearly half of women (49%) deem spending less than $25 on gifts for a date as suitable whereas only 36% of men believe that amount appropriate.

Overall, men are approximately three times as likely as women (23% vs. 8%) to spend more than $50. Surprisingly, the older singles get, the more penny-pinching they become. The older singles are more likely to feel spending $25 or less on gifts is acceptable. For the $25 $50 range, half of the 18-24 year olds surveyed were willing to spend this much whereas only about a third of the older folks were willing to cough up the cash.

Singles Find it Easier to Get a Date During the Holidays
Worried about finding a date for the office holiday party, or maybe New Year's Eve? Fear not. According to the MatchMaker survey, nearly 55% of America's singles say that it is easier to get a date during the holiday season than during other times of the year.

"Perhaps the reason is the significance singles put on the holidays for dating and the effort they take to make sure that they're not spending their holidays 'home alone' " says Khinlei Myint-U, director of dating for MatchMaker.

Singles agree that New Years is more important than Christmas for finding a date, but not by a huge margin (25% vs. 21%) but Valentines beats the other holidays by a wide margin with 47% of the vote. Singles also need not fret about bringing a date "home for the holidays." Of the singles that have brought home dates to meet mom and dad, nearly 60% indicated that they had a jolly 'ol time rather than a nightmarish experience.

The Office Holiday Party -- "Boys will be boys"
More men than women see the office holiday party as an "opportunity" for romance. Men are nearly twice as likely (12%) as women (7%) to use it for " advanced scouting on prospects for the upcoming year." Furthermore, men are also almost twice (19%) as likely as women (10%) to leverage it to "make a move on a coworker" they have been scouting. Older singles are less willing to demonstrate "risky behavior" and mix love and work at their holiday party than their younger colleagues. Nearly three times as many 18-24 year olds (14%) then 45-54 years olds (5%) would use the office party to "hit on" on a coworker.

The holiday season is a time of year when singles are very aware of their relationship status -- or lack of a significant other. "Aside from Valentine's Day, the holiday season can be the most stressful for singles, especially with mistletoes, New Year's kisses and family gatherings as the norm," says Khinlei Myint-U, director of dating for MatchMaker. "But as with any other time of the year, love can happen when you put yourself out there and allow yourself to react and respond to others. Among the arsenal of tools that singles should have at their disposal are online dating sites like"

> - The best approach to find the one. <

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